PUE - Power Utilization Effectiveness - is a common measure of energy efficiency for ICT facilities. We have often cited it in our articles, but we are mindful that efficiency does not necessarily lead to sustainability. Here are some areas where PUE can fall short.
Our e-gear contains many exotic materials. We've looked a how the demand for some - "conflict minerals" - fuels bloody, long-term warfare. The mining of others pollutes local communities. The rare earth neodymium, used in everything from smartphone speakers to datacenter disk drives, is a case in point.
Belching diesel equipment is not what one imagines when visualizing the Internet and mobile communications. It turns out they play a significant role in ICT's consumption of fossil fuels and emission of GHG.
We've identified almost 17 billion edge devices attached to our global ICT infrastructure. It turns out that the United States has a wide range of recycling rates for the different categories of e-gear. Which is best and which is worst?
We've added newer rankings for mobile and smart phones, but left the original ones below for those looking to reuse an older unit.
A Microsoft article titled "Reducing Environmental Impact through PC Life Cycle and Configuration Management" explains how the company implements sustainability in purchasing, operating, and disposing of its employee computers.
Microsoft IT has taken a complete PC life cycle management approach to ensure that all employee PCs and peripherals:
We've covered the issue of 'vampire devices": excessive standby power consumption in consumer electronics and other ICT components. As integrated circuits become more power-efficient during operation, their standby power consumption becomes an issue, too. A research group at Japan's Center for Spintronics Integrated Systems and Research Institute of Electrical Communication of Tohoku University together with NEC Corporation (NEC) has developed a standby-power-free large-scale integrated circuit (LSI).
How much electricity do the worlds iPads consume? The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) came up with these intriguing statistics and comparisons.
Vertatique posts have covered the attraction of locations that offer renewable energy, typically a combination of hydroelectric power and free air cooling from a temperate/cold climate. But about data centers in sunny climates? The question provided a good opportunity to check in on solar photovoltaic electricity (solar PV) back in 2009.
We've covered the appeal of hydroelectric power for ICT since 2009, when we noted the attraction of low-cost, low-carbon hydro in the United States' Columbia River Valley and other locations. We continue to see more hydro-powered ICT emerge around the world.
Facebook sited a data center in Lulea, Sweden based on plentiful hydro for power and Arctic air for cooling.