Sign the Green Pledge The Green Business Handbook
Tips for IT

Green IT (or Green computing) is all about using your computers and IT systems in an environmentally sustainable manner. Whether it is the design, production, usage or disposal of computers and other IT equipment, Green IT can help your company move forward in becoming a green organization 

Any company intending to Green itself through IT should aim for the following:

1) Reduce the use of hazardous materials
2) Maximize energy efficiency during the product's lifetime
3) Promote the recyclability or biodegradability of defunct products and factory waste. Making the use of computers as energy-efficient as possible 


Actions towards Green IT

Update, don’t re-buy Products: The PC manufacturing of a new PC needs a much bigger ecological footprint than manufacturing a new RAM chip to upgrade the existing PC. This would save you from buying a new computer and from generating a bigger carbon footprint.

Allocate Resources: If you’re a company that stores its data in dedicated servers, make sure you direct traffic away from data centers experiencing warm weather; this allows computers to be shut down to avoid using air conditioning. 

Have an Advanced Configuration and Power Interface (ACPI): This can help your operating system to directly control the power-saving aspects of its hardware. This allows it to automatically turn off components such as monitors and hard drives after set periods of inactivity. 

Attention: When buying a new computer, pay attention to the following labels: "SpeedStep" on Intel processors: "PowerNow!"/"Cool'n'Quiet" on AMD chips, Long Haul on VIA CPUs, Long Run with Transmeta processors. 

Power Management: Watch out for PC power management features and use them often. Examples are standby, hibernating, and the ‘eco-mode’ power plans included in operating systems such as Windows 7.

Storage: Smaller form (e.g. 2.5 inch) hard disk drives often consume less power per gigabyte than physically larger drives. Remember that more companies are working to store their data online, thereby saving energy and the costs of saving on a tape or other storage. 

Display: A fast display adapter may be the largest power consumer in a computer. 

Energy efficient display options include:
- No video card - use a shared terminal, shared thin client, or desktop sharing software if display required
- Motherboard video output - typically low 3D performance and low power
- Select a video adapter based on low idle power
- As for screens, avoid using CRT screens, which are the least efficient. Use energy-saving LCD screens which consume up to 60% less energy and require less maintenance

E-cycle your computer: Throwing away or reusing computing equipment can keep harmful materials such as lead, mercury, and hexavalent chromium, out of landfills. It can also replace equipment that otherwise would need to be manufactured, saving further energy and emissions. One available solution is the e-cycle program managed by Beeatouna, an NGO. Through this program, computer equipment no longer in use are gathered and shipped to a country that has environmentally-friendly recycling facilities. 

Telecommute! Instead of spending time, money, and fuel changing locations to go to meetings, whether local or international, it would be best if you utilize technologies made available through Skype and other Voice-Over-IP programs.
 
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