Goals

User Behavior Can Thwart Green Tech

We can't emphasize enough that behavioral/cultural change is the oft-overlooked challenge to Green ICT. We have seen what happens when green is not the default behavior or when cultural entitlements thwart good intentions. A couple more examples come from academia.

PUE: Increased Efficiency Through Increased Consumption?

There have been growing concerns about the misuse of PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness) in PR. Uptime Institute Director Kenneth Brill weighed in with widely noted critiques a year ago. Last week, Loose Bolts blogger Michael Manos raised the specter of PUE PR becoming embedded in RFPs. But what I liked best about Manos' post was his attention to an unintended consequence of the quest for efficiency.

IT Innovation and Compartmentalizing Sustainability

Ann Livermore, executive vice president of Hewlett-Packard's Technology Solutions Group, said in a recent Harvard Business podcast that IT organizations spend 70% of their budgets "just running stuff" and 30% on innovation. Observing that 40% of companies in the top quartile of their industries can loose their leadership positions during a recession,

EU Standards: WEEE, RoHS, and more

EU Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive logo European Community Directives are being increasingly used by manufacturers to label their more sustainable products. Here's a quick review of 3 key directives and 5 codes of conduct:

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.

Beyond Green ICT

An article in the McKinsey Quarterly argues that ICT can enable enough energy efficiency and carbon reduction to more than offset ICT's growth. "An analysis of five groups of abatement opportunities finds that such technologies could help to eliminate 7.8 metric gigatons of greenhouse gas emissions annually by 2020 [chart to right]—equivalent to 15 percent of global emissions today and five times more than our estimate of the emissions from these technologies in 2020." The authors base this on ICT's application to the broader economy, projecting that the gains of internal deployment (Green ICT) will be outweighed by ICT's overall global growth. (This article is also available as an MP3 download.)

EPA Report a Wealth of Green ICT Statistics

The EPA's Report to Congress on Server and Data Center Energy Efficiency Public Law 109-431 is over a year old, but remains an important data source. Among its tipping point statistics: "Another impact of higher energy densities is that server hardware is no longer the primary cost component of a data center . . .

Where to look first for data center efficiency

Computerworld's The 5 quickest returns on your green investment is a quick summary of where to find what Gartner characterizes as "low hanging fruit" and "fat". Despite the mixed metaphor, statistics and case study references make this more useful than many summary articles.

EPA Report

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:

A Wealth of Data Center Data

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:

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