iNEMI Calls for Industry-Standard Methodology to Quantify Product Carbon Footprint

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Product carbon footprinting can enable companies to quantify environmental impact of their products and easily assess trade-offs to make improvements. iNEMI calls for the electronics manufacturing supply chain to work collectively to develop standardized tools to address the specific needs of the information and communication technology (ICT) industry.

The potential for ICT technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions far exceeds the estimated two percent the ICT industry contributes to GHG emissions worldwide

Members of the International Electronics Manufacturing Initiative (iNEMI), an industry-led consortium, believe that the electronics manufacturing industry must work collectively at all levels of the supply chain to mitigate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions affecting climate change. Integral to this effort is development of a product carbon footprint (PCF) methodology that will enable companies to quantify environmental impact of their products and easily assess trade-offs to make improvements.

Twenty-one iNEMI members support the consortium’s call for an industry-standard PCF methodology (see list of supporting members below).

“Lifecycle assessment methodologies have typically been used to try to quantify the carbon footprint of information and communication technology products,” said Bill Bader, CEO of iNEMI. “However, existing lifecycle analysis tools do not effectively deal with the complexity or short lifecycles of many ICT products. Our members are calling for development of simplified LCA-based tools and industry-wide adoption of a harmonized global PCF methodology, and iNEMI is committed to taking a leadership role in making this happen.”

“The potential for ICT technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions far exceeds the estimated two percent the ICT industry contributes to GHG emissions worldwide,” continued Bader. “Power generation and fuel used for transportation are two of the leading sources of man-made GHG emissions, second only to the effects of deforestation. ICT solutions are already addressing these two areas, and there is potential for further improvements. For example, telecommuting, Web-based conferencing, even virtual trade shows are helping cut travel costs for workers. Similarly, power consumption is being reduced with smart building and smart power grid systems.”

iNEMI’s position on product carbon footprinting can be downloaded at
http://thor.inemi.org/webdownload/projects/ELSC/Position_Statement/iNEMI_PCF_Feb2010.pdf

iNEMI members supporting this position are:

Alcatel-Lucent
ASSET InterTech, Inc.
Cookson Electronics
Cisco
Dell, Inc.
DYCONEX
Elite Material Co., Ltd.
Guangdong Shengyi Sci. Tech Co., Ltd.
Henkel
HP
Intel Corporation
Integrated Service Technology, Inc. (IST group)
ITRI (Industrial Technology Research Institute)
Lenovo
Micro Systems Engineering, Inc.
Purdue University
Quanta Computer, Inc.
STATS ChipPAC
TI
Tyco Electronics
Universal Instruments

About iNEMI
The International Electronics Manufacturing Initiative’s mission is to forecast and accelerate improvements in the electronics manufacturing industry for a sustainable future. This industry-led consortium is made up of approximately 65 manufacturers, suppliers, industry associations and consortia, government agencies and universities. iNEMI roadmaps the needs of the electronics industry, identifies gaps in the technology infrastructure, establishes implementation projects to eliminate these gaps (both business and technical), and stimulates standards activities to speed the introduction of new technologies. The consortium also works with government agencies, universities and other funding agencies to set priorities for future industry needs and R&D initiatives. iNEMI is based in Herndon, Virginia (near Washington, D.C.), with regional offices in Shanghai, China and Limerick, Ireland. For additional information about iNEMI, visit http://www.inemi.org.

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CYNTHIA WILLIAMS
iNEMI
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