WORLD WILDLIFE FUND – CANADA IS TOUTING INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATIONS TECHNOLOGY (ICT) AS A KEY CONTRIBUTOR TO A CLEANER CANADIAN ENVIRONMENT.

In conjunction with Bell Canada, the conservationist organization recently released a study that said the country’s greenhouse gas emissions can be reduced by 20 million tonnes a year by making better use of ICT. That’s the equivalent of taking 3.2 million cars off the road, or 7 per cent of Canada’s annual Kyoto obligation.

With more aggressive implementation, reductions as high as 36 million tonnes a year are realistically achievable by 2020, according to the study, entitled Innovating Toward a Low-Carbon Canada: Using Technology to Transform Tomorrow. Because most of these cuts come from improving energy efficiency, cost savings to business, government and individuals are conservatively estimated at $7.5 billion to $13 billion per year.

“Business and government need to require, champion and demonstrate ICT solutions to the global warming problem – it won’t magically happen,” said Mike Russill, President and CEO of WWF-Canada. “ICT products and services offer easy, intelligent ways to save money while at the same time reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”

The report’s recommendations for saving energy included building a tele-work culture, using social networking to promote car-pooling and car-sharing, minimizing carbon emissions by driving smarter, facilitating more e-transactions, encouraging more electronic meetings, and deploying meters and controls that will help drive adoption of energy conservation.

“We have an increasingly digitized economy. What’s missing is a roadmap by which governments, business and consumers can maximize the role of ICT in fighting climate change,” said St