As the global economy shifts towards a greater reliance on information and communication technologies (ICT), there has been a surge in the requirements for data storage, data processing, communication networking Throughout a significant area of the world electricity continues to be generated from fossil fuels. Thus, with the rapid rise in requirements for electricity due to the increasing demand for ICT services across the global economy, GHG emissions have risen commensurably. The scale of the issue is more fully appreciated when one considers that the requirements for data storage and processing is now intertwined with nearly every sector of the economy, not to mention social media. In turn GHG emissions directly related to ICT has become a critical environmental issue, and in particular, one related to climate change and the continued growth in anthropogenic GHG emissions.
International standards and many programs now exist to provide guidance on the processes to create carbon credits from emissions reductions. The fundamental standard is ISO-14064-2 and an additional key document (a defacto standard) is the GHG Protocol. Both of these documents provide internationally recognized and agreed upon guidance and requirements on the process to follow to create carbon credits. In addition, many other carbon credit programs have created additional guidance for project proponents to understand what they are to do to generate emissions reductions and form those serialized carbon credits. All programs require that a project or a project proponent rely upon an accepted quantification protocol applicable either specifically or more generally for the particular project type. In the green ICT sector, there are no existing protocols that provide guidance to project proponents on if their project is eligible for generating recognized emissions reductions. Quantification protocols provide a “recipe” book for project proponent on how to ensure that their project is eligible for the generation of carbon credits. The protocols can be either program specific or of a more general nature.