Sunday, February 8, 2009

Contributing to green computing does not have to be complex or costly.

While doing some homework for my upcoming SNW presentations I was trolling through some writings from Climate Savers Computing Initiative and came across a number of fun and interesting facts that I thought were worth sharing.

  • In a typical desktop computer nearly half the power coming out of the wall is wasted and never reaches the processor, memory, disks or other components. Guess this refers to the guy’s who are not yet using 80+ power supplies.

  • Even though most desktop computers are capable of automatically transitioning to a sleep hibernate state when inactive, about 90% of systems have this function turned off. Even those folks who profess violently that they are green advocates apparently take a delight in messing with their IT folks and disabling the hibernate function.

  • Unless you are still using a CRT, screen savers do not save energy, turn the screen off. Sorry Dilbert fans. If you are still using a CRT - WHY?

  • A computer left on for 7x24x365 (8760hrs) cost about $115 to $160 in electricity annually. Individually not much to be concerned about but multiply by 1000 or 10,000+. Do the math, it is big bucks all off the bottom line. Up to 75% of electric consumption could be saved by simply powering the computers on during the work week.

  • It takes less energy to boot up a computer than it does to run it for three minutes. If you are concerned about turning off your computer don’t be. They are spec’ed to 40,000 cycles and the drives tested to 50,000 power on/off cycles. Significantly more than the number of power cycles they will experience during normal use.

  • The generation of the electricity needed to power a computer 24hrs a day for a full year will spew approximately 1500lbs of CO2 into the atmosphere. Considering that a single tree can only absorb 3 to 15 lbs of CO2 annually it would take at least 500 trees to balance a single, always on, computer.

    Being sympathetic to energy conservation does not have to be complex or costly as the simple, common sense actions of switching off your computer when leaving the workspace for an extended time or giving up on trendy screen savers illustrates. Could you lose some productivity time? Perhaps, but certainly not as much as the time wasted at the coffee pot or the proverbial water cooler.

    From small contribution great results can develop.