A new point on sustainability has been added to the Technology Code of Practice for government services.
Published by the Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO) to mark the COP26 conference, it sets out a number of practical steps that departments can take to improve the sustainability of their technology.
The new point 12 of the code of practice pulls together examples of current best practice in line with the Greening Government ICT Strategy, published last year by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and includes measures within two sectors: considering sustainability from the start of a project and meeting the Government sustainability objectives.
The second section extends into reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving the management of resources and waste and procuring sustainable technology and digital services.
Lewis Dunne and Sophie Jenkins, policy advisors at CDDO, said in a blogpost that the new section of the code comes from talking with people working on digital sustainability in government and reflects a need to increase awareness of what can be done.
“Each technology project and programme has unique requirements and processes,” they said. “This means there isn’t a single approach that will meet the needs of all project teams.
“With this in mind we have provided a series of questions to consider. Some will be more relevant than others, but the overall aim is to make sure each technology project or programme is as sustainable as possible.”
Cutting carbon, minimising waste
They identified benefits in reducing carbon and greenhouse gas emissions, minimising the waste of technology and meeting cross-government targets on net zero by 2050 and sustainable development.
“We see publishing this point as the starting line, not the finish,” Dunne and Jenkins added. “Technology Code of Practice is obviously not the solution to climate change, or even a particularly big part of a solution. But it is a statement of intent, and a commitment on our part to helping make sure that we use technology in a way that helps us achieve the goals laid out in COP26.”
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