Climate change continues to be a key concern for many of us, and it’s important that we all play our part in reducing our carbon footprint in our day-to-day lives, and in our businesses. Did you know, 25% of the energy consumed in the EU is by the manufacturing industry [1]? This represents the largest carbon footprint of any sector in the region.[2] So, what can we do to tackle this?

Connected Internet of Things (IoT) devices can help improve efficiency and reduce the footprint of businesses, such as those in the manufacturing sector. From enabling remote access allowing businesses to manage on site equipment remotely, to IoT solutions designed with sustainability in mind, here are four ways you can save energy and reduce your carbon footprint with connected IoT devices.


1) Manage onsite equipment remotely.

According to industry sources, wireless solutions facilitate remote access across manufacturing sites, allowing experts and field technicians to securely repair, maintain, and service equipment on-site. This technology not only lowers response and repair costs by offering real-time insights but also decreases the frequency of on-site visits annually, thereby reducing the carbon footprint of businesses. Furthermore, in certain cases, it has been estimated to reduce the number of unplanned technician visits to the site by approximately 33%. [3]

2) Increase energy efficiency across facilities.

Businesses typically use more energy than residential buildings. In fact, non-residential buildings account for more than 55% of global energy consumption. Despite this, most business premises are inefficient and energy waste is a real problem. [4] Using IoT solutions, we can create smart buildings, with centralized and automated environmental controls that monitor water use and temperature, among other data points. This can reduce energy costs and help businesses to meet their sustainability goals.

3)  Sustain renewable energy with connected IoT devices

In 2021, 22% of the energy consumed in the EU was generated from renewable sources, roughly the same level as in 2020. [4]

IoT solutions can help Distribution Grid and Renewables operators to remotely resolve machine failures, monitor asset health and securely distribute clean energy with maximum efficiency through standardized networks and protocols. [5]

4) Circular economy with connected IoT devices

Many IoT devices incorporate circularity throughout their lifecycle, from sustainable packaging, to optimizing energy efficiency when not in use, like the Cisco IR1101 resulting in a 35-45% reduction in energy consumption (varying on the load). Our products can be reused, remanufactured, and resold via Cisco’s Takeback and Reuse and Cisco Refresh programs. [6]

We all have a part to play. Technology can be a driver for reducing energy consumption. Transitioning to circular IT with Cisco Refresh and Cisco Green Pay can lay the foundation for organization’s sustainability journey. By taking these simple steps, your business can reduce negative impacts and support sustainability.


[1] Dolge, K., Azis, R., Lund, P., Blumberga, D., (2021). Importance of Energy Efficiency in Manufacturing Industries for Climate and Competitiveness [pdf]. Sciendo. Available: https://sciendo.com/article/10.2478/rtuect-2021-0022 [02/10/2023]

[2] Eurostat. EU economy emissions in 2021: -22% since 2008 [article]. Available: https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/web/products-eurostat-news/w/ddn-20221221-1 [02/10/2023]

[3] Burke, B. (2021). How OT Organizations Can Reduce Expenses with Remote Access Solutions [blog]. Dispel. Available: https://dispel.com/blog/why-ot-organizations-experience-high-operations-and-maintenance-expenses-how-to-reduce-them [01/10/2023]

[4] Infraspeak. Benefits of Sustainable Facility Management for buildings, people, and organisations [blog]. Available: https://blog.infraspeak.com/benefits-of-sustainable-facility-management/ [02/10/2023]

[5] European Environment Agency. Share of energy consumption from renewable sources in Europe (8th EAP) [article]. Available: https://www.eea.europa.eu/ims/share-of-energy-consumption-from#:~:text=Among%20renewable%20energy%20sources%2C%20the,%25)%20and%20biogas%20(6%25 [02/10/2023]

[6] Butaney, V. (2021). Welcome to the IoT Industry Roundtable on IoT and the Circular Economy [blog]. Cisco Blogs. Available: https://blogs.cisco.com/internet-of-things/welcome-to-the-iot-industry-roundtable-on-iot-and-the-circular-economy [02/10/2023]