Green Computing – Clippings from the Web

thompson80By John Thompson
Editor, Green Computing

Green computing. Green IT. Whatever you call it, it still means the same thing – doing what you can to reduce the carbon footprint associated with technology use, whether using technology at home or on the office desk or in the IT department’s lair.

Here are a few snippets from recent Web sites, blogs, etc. Click on the associated link to finish reading “the rest of the story” (as Paul Harvey would say).

Green Computing – Laptop Only Offices

There are ways to go green in IT that might not be obvious. Some businesses may have already made the change to laptops for reasons other than portability and a traveling workforce. Laptops are power savers, and saving power is a green goal. Let’s look at how laptops can help you go green.

MIS 1 Assignment4: Green Campus Computing

The growing use of computers on campus has caused a dramatic increase in energy consumption, putting negative pressure on CU’s budget and the environment. Each year more and more computers are purchased and put to use, but it’s not just the number of computers that is driving energy consumption upward. The way that we use computers also adds to the increasing energy burden.

Seven Design Considerations for a Green Data Centre

greenexpresIT depart­ments are under increas­ing scrutiny and pres­sure to deliver environmentally‐sound solu­tions. Large data cen­tres are one of the most sig­nif­i­cant energy con­sumers in an organisation’s IT infra­strucure so any mea­sures that can be taken to reduce this con­sump­tion (and there­fore also car­bon diox­ide emis­sions) will have a pos­i­tive impact on an organisation’s envi­ron­men­tal foot­print.

Green Campus Computing

Green computing is the study and practice of using computing resources efficiently. The primary objective of such a program is to account for the triple bottom line, an expanded spectrum of values and criteria for measuring organizational (and societal) success. The goals are similar to green chemistry: reduce the use of hazardous materials, maximize energy efficiency during the product’s lifetime, and promote recyclability or biodegradability of defunct products and factory waste.

Google banks on data centre with no chillers

Google has taken a radical new approach when it comes to cooling data centres. The search giant has opened a unique data centre in Belgium that has no backup chillers installed but, instead, relies totally upon free air cooling to keep its servers cool.

The Sustainability Potential of Cloud Computing: Smarter Design

If you listen to venture capitalists and tech gurus, cloud computing is “the new dot-com,” the “biggest shift in computing in two decades” or even the “Cambrian explosion” of the technology era. Among its other heavenly attributes, the cloud is being touted for its ability to address the enormous need for energy efficiency of IT’s own footprint.

Greening the Internet: How Much CO2 Does This Article Produce?

Twenty milligrams – that’s the average amount of carbon emissions generated from the time it took you to read the first two words of this article. Now, depending on how quickly you read, around 80, perhaps even 100 milligrams of CO2 have been released. And in the several minutes it will take you to get to the end of this story, the number of milligrams of greenhouse gas emitted could be several thousand, if not more.

Sustainable Desktop Computing

To achieve a sustained reduction in energy consumption associated with desktop computers we recommend groups across the collegiate university to work through these five steps:

Step 1: Estimate. First estimate how much electricity your desktop computing infrastructure will consume if computers are (a) left on all the time or (b) switched off at the end of the day.

Step 2: Research. Many groups within the university and around the world have implemented projects to reduce IT-related greenhouse gas emissions and costs. OUCS is working with these groups to write up a variety of approaches in the form of case studies.

Step 3: Implement. There are many tools you can implement to reduce IT-related electricity consumption. How you achieve this within your group will depend on the needs and skills of your users, and the hardware and software infrastructure you own.

Step 4: Communicate. You will need to encourage as many people as possible to “do their bit.” Behavioural change is likely to be a significant and critical part of any initiative that aims to improve environmental performance.

Step 5: Share. In step two we suggest you read about the work of other groups. In this last step we encourage you to share your experiences by documenting your approach in the form of a case study.


Happy reading “the rest of the story.” Where/how did I find this material? Using Tweetdeck, I set up Twitter searches on “green computing” and “green IT,” although almost all the URLs were found in the “green computing” (without using quotation marks) search. Using “green it” (with and without quotation marks) yielded mostly junk results. There was redundancy in the resulting tweets as people send retweets of the same information, plus there were soft/hard sells for related products. But you also find such information as cited above. You also might want to view my archived “Webinar, Blueprint for Green Computing,” found at the inaugural Virtual FOSE show’s site, It is a free registration.

Besides all this material, I hope that the resulting comments to this blog posting will contain more such green computing sites chockfull of more good information.