Increased smartphone use to coincide with higher greenhouse gas emissions

If the technology industry continues to operate in the same manner it does today, the production of greenhouse gases will skyrocket, according to a new report from Juniper Research.

The firm predicts that, while 6.4 megatonnes of CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent) will be generated from charging mobile devices by the end of the year, this figure could rise to 13 megatonnes per year by 2019.

Read more: Technology must improve quickly or fossil fuel reliance will grow

Almost half of these emissions will reportedly come out of coal-powered Asian electricity grids catering to smartphone users.

The company believes that it's time for tech firms to take the bull by the horns.

"There is low consumer awareness of renewable energy and sustainable habits," reports Juniper Research. "It is down to vendors to take the lead in making energy companies provide more green electricity for both industry and consumers."

It also thinks that green practices will encourage more of the same, claiming that, in cases where IT firms have insisted that their grids use renewable forms of energy, energy companies have responded by offering to expand renewable sources to other customers.

Juniper also identified phone design as an area that can be improved, since it can have a "large impact" on recyclability.

Read more: World Climate Summit: How on earth can the world accommodate 9 billion people?

Furthermore, the report said that, if suppliers chose to become cleaner now, the entire industry could potentially save 57.8 megatonnes in greenhouse gas emissions by 2019.

The full report, entitled "Green Mobile: The Complete Guide to Vendor Strategies & Future Prospects 2014-2019", is available online.

Image credit: Flickr (Jack Bloom)