Putting computers to sleep at the end of the day and buying efficient IT equipment are just two of the ways the Energy Star Low Carbon IT Campaign suggests companies can reduce the impact of their computing.
Companies can save between $10 and $50 per computer per year simply by putting them to sleep using computer power management, according to the campaign’s “Six ways to reduce IT energy costs” web page. Computer power management features automatically place computers into a low-power “sleep mode” after a period of inactivity. Simply touching the mouse or keyboard “wakes” the computer in seconds. Your network administrator can activate these settings quickly and easily across your entire network, the campaign says.
Choosing efficient IT equipment is another way to cut energy use. For example, Energy Star qualified displays include computer monitors, digital picture frames and professional signage which meet stringent energy efficiency requirements in On, Sleep, and Off Modes. On average, displays that have earned Energy Star certification are 25 percent more energy efficient than standard options.
Another major concern for the energy conscious company should be energy usage in the data center, the program says. Some top ways to save energy in the data center include server virtualization, HVAC adjustments and correctly deploying airflow management devices. Companies should also consider benchmarking their data center. Energy Star has also published a guide to efficient data center design.
The reduction of peripheral energy consumption is also key, according to the campaign. For example, printer consolidation saves money by reducing the number of devices an organization’s printer fleet, and by ensuring that the remaining devices are more cost effective to own and operate. Similarly, using “smart” power strips can reduce the power consumed by task lighting, computer accessories, fans, space heaters, and other miscellaneous plug loads in cubicles and offices. Many electronic products continue to draw power from the wall even when they are powered off, Energy Star says.
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