The Latest Vertatique News & Insights

Who Creates the Most E-Waste?

Vertatique Sustainable Media Creation Practices

Here are some basics for production and postproduction facilities and practitioners seeking to improve the sustainability of their media work. Check out the recently-updated international resources on right for more resources and check out our posts about green media technologies, practices, and vendors.

Start off "Green from the Go"

Educate and engage your team. Bring in an outside resource to accelerate learning and work through cultural issues.

Free Air, Hot Racks, and Cool Liquids

Handling our gear's heat has always been an issue for installations large and small. ICT equipment typical took 1x-2x again more energy to remove its heat as it took to power it in the first place (PUE of 2.0+), driving both energy costs and carbon footprints. Early efforts focused on the two obvious tactics: make both the ICT gear and the air conditioning more efficient. We now see these augmented by innovative new approaches to the problem, ranging from seawater cooling to variable-speed fan retrofits.

IEEE's Green ICT Initiatives

IEEE describes itself as "the world's largest professional association for the advancement of technology." We regularly cite its magazine, IEEE Spectrum, on this site. Here is an update of IEEE initiatives relevant to Green ICT.

EPEAT Under Threat No More

We have been covering EPEAT - America's global registration program for green ICT gear - since 2008. EPEAT is referenced in ~40 posts on this site. A policy change by United States government recently threatened the program's roll in Federal purchasing. That policy has now been reversed.

Will Liquid-Cooled Computers Make a Comeback?

Liquid cooling was once a staple of large-scale computing, but has largely been replaced by air cooling. We identified several efforts to bring liquid cooling to the server world in our first version of this post in 2012 and have seen continuous progress since. Here is the latest news.

Conflict Minerals and the Hidden Cost of e-Devices

Our e-devices contain all sorts of exotic materials, many of which, like tungsten, tantalum, and tin, are refined from ores that originate in Central Africa. Called "conflict minerals", they fund warfare in the Congo and neighboring countries. More people are said have been killed here than any conflict since World War Two. Progress is being made, but legal setbacks and weak laws are slowing efforts. The latest critiicisms focus on proposed EU regulations.

Apple in China

were critical of Apple's environmental stance a few years ago, saying that the company was positioned to be a leader rather than a a foot-dragger. Since then, the company has made significant strides, such as improvements to its take-back recycling programs*. On the downside, issues about its Chinese contract manufacturing operations have been slow to be resolved. Recent actions toward addressing labor issues need to be matched with ones addressing environmental issues. Factory pollution takes a toll on both workers and neighbors and a July 2013 report alleges problems still persist. Yet Apple continues to improve its environmental position in China - producing solar power is its latest initative.

E-waste / Cyber Waste

"E-waste" and "cyber waste" describe the unwanted systems and components of our industry. Green organizations and facilities mitigate their e-waste impacts by repurposing and recycling equipment when scheduled for replacement. Despite all the focus on e-waste over the past decade, it continues to pollute communities around the world and threatens global ICT infrastructures. Yet no one cal agree on how much is actually out there.

Finding the Greenest Notebooks

The EPEAT Gold database includes 389 models for the US. This represents a drop of ~30% over a year ago. The biggest drops came from Toshiba (-47%) and Samsung (-76%), the companies that offer the most models a year ago. Toshiba is still a model count leader, along with HP and Apple. The latter two companies increased their models counts in the past year.

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