How to use ICT and social media to reduce the use of fossil fuels in Brussels?The Brussels Climathon let you team up with persons who want to take action on climate change. Fossil fuels is the single most important cause of climate change and air pollution. Digital technologies connect people, data & devices. Let's repurpose the use of data on our devices and clean Brussels
57% or 4.5 billion people use the internet. 5 billion mobile devices connect us through a global information and communication (ICT) network. Devices and sensors produce every day more and more data and people exchange information and knowledge via social media. When wisely used, data, information and knowledge offer huge opportunities to assist us and facilitate our lives, and increase our understanding of natural phenomenon such as the climate.
Our economy is powered essentially by fossil fuels. We know that we have to leave them in the ground to avoid catastrophic climate events, but it is hard to change habits and move towards a net-zero carbon sustainable way of living.
The question we challenge you to address is how can we use the internet and the mobile devices to reduce and avoid fossil fuel use in the Brussels area?
Digital technologies can help us to monitor and optimize the effects of our choices, for instance to reduce our energy use at home, and to avoid commuting by working remotely. They increase our insight and can inform us about the consequences of our choices.
Although the promise of ICTs for a sustainable future is bright, the potential of the digital economy comes with costs as well as risks. Consider for instance, the ecological footprint of digital devices themselves (the internet consumes between 3 and 6 percent of the global production of electricity), or the risk of disinformation, digital exclusion and violation of data security and privacy.
The challenge before us is how to ensure that ICTs usher in a sustainable, climate-positive future.
People, devices, and data are part of the ICT network. The key is to create deliberate climate positive solutions that support sustainability.:
We challenge you to address the following questions to unlock the potential of digital technology whilst avoiding its pitfalls:
How can digital technologies help tackling climate change? Can we combine information and communication technologies with social networks to achieve positive climate impacts in the Brussels region?
How can distributed networks with connected sensors and devices via the Internet of Things (IoT) use aggregated data and artificial intelligence (AI) to facilitate climate-positive choices? What services are necessary to realise that possibility?
What systems or processes can companies use to harness digital technologies to reduce their climate impacts whilst making profits?
Here are some ideas to get you started.
A social media art environment that gives citizens the possibility to experiment with attitudes and actions and create awareness of their effect on the climate and environment. The experience could be recorded in the form of a short film, poem, a web-comic or infographic, a song or real-world installation – as long as the content is somehow sharable, and designed to promote conversation and action around climate issues.
Establishing a public-private partnership to assess citizen-relevant sustainability initiatives and accelerate their up-take, e.g. by facilitating new skills (digital, cognitive, technical), and distribution via market-based approaches.
A route-planning optimisation app that minimises the carbon footprint of multi-stop trips.
An application-programming interface (API, i.e. a programming instructions/ standards to access web-based software applications or tools) that aggregates environmental data based on data collected from smartphones, sensors and smart devices e.g. to measure air quality, UV or temperature fluctuations, or from large data sets in the cloud.
Networked gear or wearables that measure and give feedback about user exposure to chemical substances or particles in air and water.
A sensor-enabled app (e.g. with a public display) that provides real-time feedback about the crossing of threshold values of environmental and atmospheric parameters.
Circular hardware devices e.g. phone, computer, that sport modular components that can be exchanged or upgraded (e.g., display, camera) therewith extending the functional lifespan, or which components can be swapped to fit other devices.
Gamified interaction of (IoT) device-users that allow them to work through environmental and climate scenarios for instance to compete on minimising energy usage or climate impact.
A self-learning algorithm empowered by AI that trains itself to provide answers on common consumer questions such as about reducing the eco-footprint, e.g. in the context of transportation options, or the selection of material or energy sources.
AI-enhanced IoT devices that use social (media) data to identify the least climate impacting moment or way to use or change appliances or mobility options, download or upload media files, etc
Join the Climathon in the Capital of Europe to get better at getting the climate better
Think European, act locally. Give feedback to the future and bring about innovation to help Brussels to drop its fossil fuel addiction. What do you propose to get to zero emissions in your neighboorhood within one generation? Boldly plan the air in Brussels to be clean in 2030; what'll we do now?See more from Brussels