All businesses are now expected to have sustainability goals, with consumers increasingly making ethical food and clothing choices in a bid to be more sustainable. So how does the Internet of Things (IoT) come into the equation?
As one of the three most impactful technological advancements we will see before 2030, according to McKinsey, the IoT is able to increase efficiency. Research by IoT Analytics of more than 640 IoT deployments shows that 84% of these address the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals. Of these, 75% focus on five of the Sustainable Development Goals: industry, innovation and infrastructure; smart cities and communities; affordable and clean energy; good health and well-being; and responsible production and consumption.
By providing industry sectors with greater efficiencies, the emerging connected world can become a cleaner, more sustainable place. We're looking at three examples of how IoT technology is making a positive impact on the planet.
In Buenos Aires, data analytics company SAP teamed up with Philips to bring the city 91,000 smart lights. Adjustment protocols and data visualization allow the engineers to adjust the lights in real time, increasing efficiency. Since the project launched, the city has seen a dramatic reduction in energy consumption.
Taking out the rubbish
With rapid urbanization and growing populations, waste disposal is a global concern. Now, as IoT technology is applied to waste management, trash is getting smarter. SmartBin is offering a sustainable alternative to waste collection by providing sensors that enable the notification of operational teams when the bins are full. Waste removal services are only deployed when necessary, therefore cutting emissions.
An IoT approach can help reduce water waste and increase energy efficiency in the farming world. Agrisource Data helps farmers by using sensors to produce real-time data on water, electricity, nutrient, chemical and fuel usage, allowing farmers to optimize systems. So far, the company claims to have saved more than seven million liters of water and increase average yield by nearly 10%.
And there's much more…
These applications of the IoT are just the start. The IoT has enabled all sorts of products and devices in the home. Smart homes, also known as connected homes, are growing in popularity. In smart cities, smart parking, where collected data allows drivers to book parking spaces, is reducing the time used to search for a parking space and therefore reducing emissions; and smart buildings, which use cameras and sensors to share real-time information, are helping building managers prepare energy-efficient strategies.