Initiative to Promote Sustainability Via IoT Technologies

The industrial Internet of Things (IoT) can add $14 trillion of economic value to the global economy by 2030 according to the World Economic Forum’s ‘Guidelines for Sustainability’. However, while technology driven change can be a tremendous driver for value creation, some of its side effects, including wasteful usage patterns and throwaway technology, can undermine total gains.

This highlights why organizations need to factor first- and second-order sustainability principles in their technology and design choices.

Since 2012, oneM2M has been leading a multi-national, open, and collaborative approach to create an extensible standard for IoT systems. From the outset, oneM2M participants recognized the importance of defining a general-purpose architecture applicable to a wide range of application domains. The intention was to avoid competing standardization efforts, at the technical and national levels.

oneM2M also encourages interoperability by helping developers to re-use existing and established technologies, some of which are specific to individual industry domains. oneM2M’s principles align with well-accepted sustainability objectives that seek to minimize duplicative efforts while prolonging the usefulness of legacy investments and fostering economies of scale.

oneM2M is now launching an industry facing initiative on sustainability. It aims to promote the beneficial impact of IoT systems, the importance of open-standard solutions and the significant role that the oneM2M standard has in improving the sustainability of IoT deployments.

Dale Seed, convenor of oneM2M’s sustainability initiative from Interdigital and Convida Wireless, noted: “The concept received strong cross-member support when first discussed and reflects the priority that corporations are putting on this issue. By launching this initiative, we want to help businesses build sustainability using IoT systems. We also want to show them how to choose sustainable technologies and prepare for the new innovation possibilities that these technologies enable.”

On top of its member base, participation in oneM2M’s sustainability initiative is open to the wider technology and software services communities. This is because most IoT systems rely on partnerships among suppliers along business and operational value chains. Since the IoT and associated technologies such as AI, cloud computing and mobile internet are enablers of digital transformation, the oneM2M initiative also aims to work across industry domains.

“Mobile networks and IoT technologies are among the topmost candidates for enabling sustainability in the way that organizations manage their environmental footprint. This new initiative offers a way to help organizations build IoT systems based on an open standards framework that is scalable and minimizes waste by re-using established technologies and legacy systems,” added Enrico Scarrone, Steering Committee Chair at oneM2M.

Building on the contributions of more than 250 members organisations, oneM2M specifications provide a framework to support end-to-end IoT systems, applications, and services. The horizontal architecture and framework for oneM2M technical specifications has been developed in an open and collaborative environment, with a clear governance framework. These factors facilitate trust in its specifications, cross-vendor interoperability tests and certification efforts.

The first meeting of the new oneM2M Sustainability Sub-Committee took place on the 20th April 2021.

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