Wal-Mart Joins Uncle Sam On 'Green' Bandwagon - InformationWeek
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3/14/2007
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Wal-Mart Joins Uncle Sam On 'Green' Bandwagon

Still think this "Green Computing" is a lot of tree hugger blather you can safely ignore? This week, Wal-Mart joins the U.S. government in embracing standards for what a makes an earth-friendly computer. This drumbeat's going to keep getting louder.

Still think this "Green Computing" is a lot of tree hugger blather you can safely ignore? This week, Wal-Mart joins the U.S. government in embracing standards for what a makes an earth-friendly computer. This drumbeat's going to keep getting louder.Wal-Mart has set the criteria it'll use next year to offer rankings of how environmentally friendly various electronic products are. As K.C. Jones reports, it'll create "scorecards" for factors such as energy efficiency, durability, and package size. Wal-Mart also will consider what ends up in the dump-such as whether the product can be upgraded and recycled, and whether it contains hazardous materials.

This points to a huge change coming in Green Computing: it's going to be a whole lot easier to measure whether your computers are earth friendly. Wal-Mart's market clout means what it does tends to ripple through the industry. And more importantly, there are other measurements coming, as our Green Computing in-depth article this week notes.

The EPA will release new Energy Star standards for PCs by July, moving the bar much higher than today's 5-year-old standard. The other key standard is the EPEAT, created by the the Green Electronics Council. President Bush has ordered government agencies where possible to to buy equipment covered by EPEAT, which incorporates the Energy Star standards and the tough EU limits on hazardous materials.

Businesses don't want to spend a ton of time figuring out what specs they need to include to buy an earth-friendly machine. But if they can work off established standards such as the Energy Star and EPEAT, they probably will, since it's likely to save them money in power consumption. Believe it, green is good.

For other Green Computing news this week alone, check these links: HP Unveils 'Green' PCs (InformationWeek) Start-Up Fervor Shifts to Energy in Silicon Valley (New York Times) TechNet rolls out green tech agenda (ZDNet Between The Lines) GE chief: All engines go for alternative energy (Cnet)

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