ICT facilities of all kinds are increasingly looking to complement energy efficiency with sourcing renewable energy. We found ISPs already using renewables when we launched Veratique in 2007 and a couple of years later noted the first US television station to use wind power. Now we see diesel being replaced by renewables to power remote telecom facilities. Data centers are also part of the trend.
The BBC reports on US research: "The 'unified' memory device…combines the speed of DRAM while being able to switch to a more persistent mode of storage. That would potentially enable computer makers to build machines that boot up almost instantly, as the information needed to start up the machine could be stored in fast memory…It could also lead to servers that can be powered down, when not in use. Currently, the servers found in most data centres continue to slurp energy even when their processors are idle because the server memory cannot be turned off without affecting performance."
According to Pike Research, "capital investment in energy-efficient network equipment will reach $122 billion by 2014, representing 46% of the total network infrastructure market...The opportunity is largest for mobile network operators, which we expect will represent almost two-thirds of the green telecom market. This focus is especially relevant as mobile operators deploy 4G networks at scale over the next few years."
Power use trends from 2003 to 2010 show a marked reduction, primarily in Active mode but in Standby mode as well. For LCD TVs, the Active mode power density dropped from 0.35 W/in2 in 2003 to 0.13 W/in2 in 2010, representing a 63 percent decrease; for Standby mode it dropped from a high of 6.1 mW/in2 in 2004 to 0.77 mW/in2 in 2010, representing an 87 percent decrease. In plasma TVs, for Active mode it dropped from 0.22 W/in2 in 2008 to 0.13 W/in2 in 2010, representing a 41 percent decrease; for Standby mode it dropped from 0.46 mW/in2 in 2008 to 0.07 mW/in2 in 2010, representing an 85 percent decrease.
"The PC and server power management software market is set to expand nearly fivefold from $168 million in 2010 to $783 million annually by 2015, "according to a report from Pike Research. "…PC power management software alone could be saving almost 47 MTCO2e of emissions by 2015, equivalent to taking nearly 8 million cars off the road…This is a particular boon for corporate IT departments, since servers use 60% of their maximum power while doing nothing at all.”
A coalition of Chinese NGOs allied with the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs (IPE) periodically ranks tech companies on their environmental and human rights performance in China. The fourth such ranking contains some surprises.
The Green Grid is a "consortium of information technology companies and professionals seeking to lower the overall consumption of power in data centers around the globe." The Green Grid has been a valuable resource in the effort to improve data center energy efficiency, but recent changes in management and mission still fall short of a comprehensive vision of sustainable ICT.
Pike Research's Sustainable Electronics Design report forecasts that "while sustainability efforts are already impacting the shipment of approximately 68 billion electronic product units as of 2010, this number will increase by more than 50% to 103 billion units by 2015."
Notebooks, including laptops and netbooks, is the most well-reviewed e-gear category. HP models are noted by all five sources; Apple and Toshiba by four. The EPEAT Gold database includes over 670 models for the US; Samsung, Sony and Toshiba offer the most.
Vertatique emphasises 'Green ICT' over 'Green IT' to embrace the opportunities in communications infrastructures and operations: telecommunications, broadcast media, etc. One such opportunity in occurs as the global telecommunications networks migrate from a circuit switching (TDM) to packet switching. ('Data' communication now dominates traffic as even telephony moves to packets (VoIP).) An investor makes the case that his portfolio company making energy-saving migration switches is "cleantech".