COP28 tackles the climate crisis through Green Digital Action

The outcomes of the Green Digital Action track include corporate agreements on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, collaboration on e-waste regulation, and strengthening industry and state collaboration on environmental sustainability standards.

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Tech companies and governments have pledged to increase their actions to address the climate crisis through the Green Digital Action track at the 28th Conference of the Parties (COP28) in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Led by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), this initiative aims to unite the digital technology sector in accelerating collective efforts to tackle climate change.

Outcomes of the Green Digital Action track at COP28 include corporate agreements to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, aligning with the target of limiting climate warming to 1.5°C. The commitments also involve creating transition plans and increasing transparency in emissions data across the tech industry. Additionally, there is cross-sector collaboration among manufacturers, standardisation bodies, and other stakeholders to develop e-waste regulations, fostering a circular tech industry. This collaboration aims to tackle the growing challenge of electronic waste and promote a more sustainable approach to technology.

Furthermore, leading international standards developers such as ITU, International Organization for Standardization (ISO), and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) have issued a joint statement emphasising the importance of integrating sustainability into technical standards development. They believe that such standards can contribute to achieving net-zero emissions and creating a resource-efficient, circular, and low-carbon economy.

Why does it matter?

The commitments made by tech companies and governments through the Green Digital Action track at COP28 demonstrate an increasing recognition of digital technology’s role in addressing the climate crisis. The involvement of the tech sector in combating climate change is crucial due to its significant contribution to global greenhouse gas emissions. ITU and its partners’ call for a dedicated digital day at COP29 also strengthens the SDG Digital Acceleration Agenda, highlighting that more than two-thirds of the UN’s targets for sustainable development can directly benefit from digital technologies.