ICT infrastructures for telework are a key component of a green computing strategy, reducing both local commuting and long-distance travel costs and carbon. A Harvard Business Review Editor's Blog post, "The Telecommuting Imperative", takes on executive reluctance to advance telework. Among other motivations cited for moving more aggressively:
The EPA Report to Congress on Server and Data Center Energy Efficiency found that "The peak load on the power grid from these servers and data centers is currently estimated to be approximately 7 gigawatts (GW), equivalent to the output of about 15 baseload power plants and "power failures and limits on power availability will interrupt data center operations at more than 90 percent of all companies over the next five years." This was written in August 2007:
The U.S. Green Building Council's (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System™ now has a LEED for Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance component. Points are awarded for a number of e-green practices, including telecommuting and sustainable purchases of IT and media electronics. Use of EPEAT-rated computers and monitors is specifically noted as "exemplary performance".
Organizations assessing the value of e-green now have another factor to consider: employee recruiting and retention. The latest Adecco USA Workplace Insight survey found "American workers are paying growing attention to companies’ environmental policies and an increasing number (36 percent) report that they would be more inclined to work for ”green” companies." The report continues:
The EPA estimates ~100 million analog television sets are already in storage. More analog television sets will become obsolete over the next two years as analog over-the-air (OTA) broadcasting is terminated in favor of digital-only signals (DTV). According to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) survey report "Trends in Consumer Electronics (CE) Afterlife", consumers intend to sell, donate, or recycle 95%. Will this really happen . . . ?
The McKinsey / Uptime Institute report Revolutionizing Data Center Efficiency, available as both a PowerPoint and a podcast, contains a wealth of current and projected data on energy utilization and GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions, including information about what various enterprises are doing. Among its findings:
I'm under no illusion that enterprises don't try to secure advantage from the green initiatives featured in Vertatique and I believe it is appropriate for an organization to credibly promote its meaningful progress toward sustainability. But those seeking to do so should be mindful that they are facing a skeptical and savvy audience, according to a survey from Burst Media:
Citing industry and government sources, Baseline reports that "facility costs have climbed from about 2 percent of budgets to 5 percent . . . that number will zoom up to 30 percent within just a few years . . . data center power consumption is due to significantly increase in just the next three years, by at least 40 percent." Are CIO's responding by deploying the ever-growing range of technologies and practices that they can find here at Vertatique?
Media industry practitioners can access audio and slide presentations of the sessions at the 2008 Green Media Summit. The focus is on media replication, packaging, and distribution, but other topics are covered during the day-long program.
I saw a trade show exhibit touting "Green Storage". Turns out the storage array manufacturer had a scheme for selectively powering down individual disks as appropriate to the application.
Energy-saving technologies are good and, in one sense, are inherently green. But the web site of the company in question did not present an overall sustainability strategy for its products or operations. Nor does this company appear to be a participant in the SNIA Green Storage Initiative.
When marketing "green", where is the line between commitment and hype?