Companies involved in electronics manufacturing have been told that they may need to incorporate greener technologies into their products if they are to overcome the limitations imposed by government carbon caps.
Scientists at Rice University in Houston have assessed a broad range of different devices based on their power consumption in 2009, their predicted popularity in 2020 and the carbon emissions associated with their use.
Mobile phones, for instance, have increased in their capabilities in recent years but have not yet seen a significant increase in battery power, limiting their impact on the figures.
Even so, they are expected to rise from consuming 2.61 billion kWh of power in 2009 to account for 11.77 kWh in 2020.
With this in mind, the researchers warn that greener electronics manufacturing may be the key to retaining profitability.
Rice University computer science lecturer Chris Bronk says: "The industry is headed for a brick wall if limits are placed on CO2 emissions.
"In a carbon-constrained economy, green innovation will be absolutely essential for ICT profitability."