This new initiative creates a means for CSPs to determine value chain emissions data and easily transpose it to their product catalog.
How to help CSPs promote lower-carbon offers to reduce Scope 3 emissions using GenAI
Like many organizations across the tech community, CSPs are under growing pressure to reduce their carbon impact. CSPs have made significant progress in understanding and reducing their direct emissions in recent years, but now face the urgent task of reducing their indirect emissions too. So-called ‘Scope 3’ emissions are those indirectly generated by other suppliers in the overall value chain - and are estimated to account for approximately 85% of a CSP’s typical carbon footprint. Understanding Scope 3 emissions gives CSPs an opportunity to provide their customers with precise information on the carbon footprint of each product, and by extension act as an incentive for their suppliers to improve their carbon footprint as well.
The Digital carbon footprint optimization Catalyst is creating a means for CSPs to determine value chain emissions data and easily transpose it to a product catalog. To achieve this, the project uses real-time data and AI (including generative AI) built sustainably on cloud infrastructure to create a new way to build product bundles and provide ongoing CO2e data and analytics. This is made possible by real-time integration of external carbon datasets from industry experts Carbon Footprint Ltd. By using their data, the project team has been able to transparently provide access to accurate, real-time carbon footprint information for each product component. CSP product managers and marketing teams will be able view CO2e data for each component, ultimately allowing them to create more environmentally oriented product bundles which make use of the CO2e visualized data attributes in the product catalog.
The product catalog itself will expose CO2e data using the TM Forum Open APIs (specifically, TMF 620 – Product Catalog Management). Through various digital channels enabled by other TMF Open APIs, both sales agents and customers will be able to view the carbon footprint and score for each offer, providing transparency and encouraging product selection that aligns more precisely with customer sustainability goals. What’s more, the success of each product and its associated emissions data can be analyzed by CSPs to produce highly targeted promotions and incentives.
To improve the accuracy of available emissions data, customers will also be given a choice to opt in to usage data analysis which can inform them on ways they can lower their carbon footprint when using devices. Data on device charging behaviour can be provided via an app, helping to understand their own carbon footprint and how to extend battery life. Like all data and analytics tracks in this Catalyst, this can be gamified to provide rewards earnings and encourage more environmentally aware behavioral changes.
So far, the results of this Catalyst have been promising. The use case in the proof-of-concept saw carbon reduction of 69% (from 552kg CO2e to 170kg CO2e) as a result of displaying carbon emissions alongside product offers and enabling selection of lower-carbon alternatives. Through the integration of generative AI models, data analytics capabilities are turned into predictive insights – customers have access to advanced information on carbon footprint and can find out additional information via conversational, generative AI. The implementation of the product catalog on cloud infrastructure has resulted in a carbon footprint reduced by 85% compared to others using current enterprise data centers. In the course of the project cycle, this Catalyst team also identified the opportunity to create a new TMF Open API to ingest carbon footprint data from external data providers into the CSPs product catalog.
The project has also identified an opportunity to establish a common, open carbon data set which could be established for all CSPs and TM Forum members to use and ensure consistency, transparency and compliance across the industry. According to Ulrich Irnich, IT Director & CIO of Vodafone Germany, “This project will significantly impact the way the industry sells, providing a way for CSPs to pass on their net-zero ambitions and enable their customers to make lower-carbon choices. This concept has potential to grow into an industry best practice as more companies and industries commit to calculating carbon footprints.”