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Indirect Rebound and Reverse Rebound Effects in the ICT-sector and Emissions of CO2

Authors
Håkansson, Cecilia (Department of Sustainable Development, Environmental Sciences and Engineering (SEED), and Center for Sustainable Communications (CESC), KTH Royal Institute of Technology)
Search for Cecilia Håkansson in Research Programmes Information System
Finnveden, Göran (Department of Sustainable Development, Environmental Sciences and Engineering (SEED), and Center for Sustainable Communications (CESC), KTH Royal Institute of Technology)
Search for Göran Finnveden in Research Programmes Information System
Chapter ConverStation I
Volume EnviroInfo & ICT4S, Conference Proceedings (Part 1)
Conference Building the knowledge base for environmental action and sustainability
Copenhagen, 2015
Year 2015
Abstract of the Article
It has been suggested that the ICT sector has a large potential of reducing environmental impacts in society through enabling smarter and more efficient solutions. Some of this potential may however be offset by different types of rebound and other indirect effects. There are a number of different types of rebound and other indirect effects that can be relevant. Some of them may lead to positive environmental impacts; others may lead to negative impacts. In this paper we have analysed the indirect rebound effects for the ICT-sector and also what we here call the reverse rebound effect. We have used Environmentally Extended Input-Output Analysis with data for Sweden. The results in this paper indicate that rebound effects can be significant. If efficiency improvements occur in the production of the ICT equipment, there could be a strong rebound effect which would reduce the potential decrease of emissions that could occur without the rebound effect. If on the other hand, efficiency improvements concern the electricity used by the ICT equipment, the rebound effect is expected to be smaller, and real emission reductions could be expected. The total spending on ICT products have increased and this could lead to a reversed rebound effect when less is consumed of other products and services. The results here suggest that this reversed rebound effect could be significant and lead to overall reduced emissions.
Pages 66 - 73
Additional Information 10.2991/ict4s-env-15.2015.8
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