Tomorrow’s attractive cities will be sustainable, socially inclusive – and smart. At Ericsson, we see a future where information and communications technology enables cities to exploit renewable, distributed energy, to seamlessly manage low-carbon transport systems, address circular economy and to efficiently supply water and wastewater services.
In Stockholm, where we are based, we are turning that future vision into reality. We are collaborating with the city authorities and other private sector actors on a range of projects and initiatives that promise to make this city, and others, work better and more efficiently at the same time as reducing their environmental impacts.
We are delighted to be involved with Stockholm’s signature the Stockholm Royal Seaport (SRS) project, helping to transform a hitherto industrial area of the city into an exemplar of sustainable living, commercial and work areas. We are cooperating with academia, Royal Institute of Technology, the Swedish Energy authority and the private sector. One of the areas, we address in the smart grid project with our partners, is trying out how technologies and home energy management services can be used to change consumer behavior to enable flexible demand for more than 150 apartments. It is one of the first cases of its kind and size in the world where we can see how people use and adopt their behavior during a full year. This is a critical input to develop product and services on a global scale to achieve flexible demand in practice.
Stockholm has also launched its Digital Demo Stockholm initiative, in which we are participating, and which aims to harness innovation to transform traffic management, elderly care, social integration and water provision – with the former promising to also reduce emissions
Ericsson has also recently joined the city’s Climate Pact, a network of companies enabled by the city authorities that holds enormous promise in terms of building relationships and developing projects that will help drive down climate impacts – at the same time as helping us develop new products and services.
Close partnerships between cities such as Stockholm and private sector actors such as Ericsson are important to support cities address their carbon emissions. They also provide vital laboratories for us to develop smart products and services. By sharing knowledge, and by working to understand the challenges and constraints faced by city governments, we can better tailor our offerings to their needs and demands. And we can take those experiences, to scale in other places as well as to use them to develop services that are urgently needed around the world.
To be able to successfully address climate change, the lessons we are learning working with Stockholm will also need to be applied elsewhere. Sweden’s predominantly low-carbon electricity mix means that per capita emissions in the country are already low. For all the progress we can make in northern Europe, it will be in the fast-growing cities of Asia, Latin American and Africa where the major benefits of collaboration will be reaped and where we can combine our hands on experience with our research experience on how Information and Communication Technology (ICT), can reduce global carbon emissions, with up to 15% by 2030.
Matilda Gennvi Gustafsson: Sustainability Director, Group Function Sustainability & Corporate Responsibility, Ericsson