The Latest Vertatique News & Insights

The Push for Sustainable Biomedical Devices

EU regulators continue to exempt medical devices from sustainable technology standards like RoHS and WEEE. 2012 now looks like the earliest the exemption will be lifted. But pressure on device manufacturers to address these issues is mounting through specific focus by associations like

Will We See Green ICT as Public Policy?

The appointment of Steven Chu as U.S. Secretary of Energy holds special significance for for the green computing community. Cho is the former head of Lawerence Berkley National Labs. Under his leadership, LBNL became a leader in energy-efficient computing.  A seminal 2007 report elevated worldwide awareness and was the basis for one of the first Vertatique posts.

Telling the Green ICT Story

Readers who have followed Vertatique since 2007 know that I find the photographs of and film about Edward Burtynsky make compelling arguments for getting a handle on our e-waste/cyberwaste stream. I was reminded of this by the reaction his story and work always receive when I talk about Green ICT.

Broadcast Equipment and EC Compliance - Updated

The European Community has not exempted broadcast from its environmental regulations for electrical and electronic equipment like it has biomedical. Click here to learn about which media product vendors working to comply.

Using Green IT to Practice What We Preach

Businesses, government agencies, and non-profits who advocate green, sustainable, or environmentally responsible behavior are most credible when practicing what they preach. Cultural factors, including perceived entitlements, can be barriers. Here are some examples, courtesy of Computerworld, of organizations which used Green ICT tactics to align their internal behavior with their external message.

Gaming consoles next target for improved energy consumption?

"Consumer electronics is the fastest-growing source of electricity use in people's homes," says the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). "It's now up to 15 or 20 percent." Video game consoles are the latest devices to come under energy use scrutiny. "Today, more than 40 percent of all homes in the United States contain at least one video game console . . .they consumed an estimated 16 billion kilowatt-hours per year -- roughly equal to the annual electricity use of the city of San Diego. Through the incorporation of more user-friendly power management features, we could save approximately 11 billion kWh of electricity per year, cut our nation's electricity bill by more than $1 billion per year, and avoid emissions of more than 7 million tons of CO2 each year." Until the industry steps improves its devices' power management, "gamers can significantly reduce the energy consumed by their consoles through simple steps like turning off the console when not actively playing a game or watching a movie and enabling power management features when available." Visit the NRDC's consoles page to read the comprehensive report, Lowering the Cost of Play by Noah Horowitz, and to learn how to enable power management features on existing consoles.

[Thank you to NRDC's Anthony Clark for providing graph.]

Quantifying the Benefits of Teleconferencing and Telecommuting

Cable media company Discovery Communications LLC " has encouraged workers to telecommute and teleconference . . . 'Thirty percent of the staff telecommutes at least one day a week,' says [CIO Dave] Kline. In 2004, Discovery installed teleconferencing systems to cut down on business travel. 'Teleconferencing has a huge ROI for us because

Speed, Power, and Heat

Two charts published by tech site Tom's Hardware show that processor performance appears stuck below 4 GHz, while energy consumption has plateaued at 130W. Is the solution to more performance merely cranking up the juice? It's not that easy.

Green Rendering

The production of realistic animations and effects sequences requires clusters of computers and mass storage known as "render farms". One approach to strike a balance between availability and energy consumption is to integrate power management tools into workflow. Here are two examples, along with one even more aggressive approach to green rendering.

Green Computing Case Studies

Computerworld's "Top 12 Green-IT Users" list links each organization's name to a sustainable IT mini-case study. These organization include businesses from a variety of sectors, a non-profit, and a government agency. I was stuck by unique and unexpected implementations:

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