Why CIOs Can't Help But Care About The Environment - InformationWeek
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3/12/2007
12:38 PM
Chris Murphy
Chris Murphy
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Why CIOs Can't Help But Care About The Environment

Trendy as the idea of "Green Computing" is these days, most CIOs aren't under any real pressure to make their operations more earth-friendly. However, the pressure to cut costs means they have little choice but to act more green.

Trendy as the idea of "Green Computing" is these days, most CIOs aren't under any real pressure to make their operations more earth-friendly. However, the pressure to cut costs means they have little choice but to act more green.In our in-depth article looking at the forces driving the Green Computing trend, Marianne Kolbasuk McGee finds most IT execs aren't making tech decisions based on environmental factors. But with the demand for computing power soaring, they're finding it critical to improve energy efficiency, leading some to push for improvements of 25% or more in their data centers. Other factors, including increased regulatory scrutiny, also are forcing IT to be a bit more eco-friendly. Our article explores ways companies are going more green, and what business value they're getting for it.

A few companies have set out to build the most environmentally friendly data centers they could, right down to using rainwater to flush the toilets. Those companies' efforts extend well beyond the computing infrastructure and are driven by a definite sense of environmental mission.

The most vocal leaders of the Green Computing movement of late have been tech vendors. Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff makes a passionate case to do something to offset computing's carbon impact, even if the options may be less than perfect. Dell embraced the idea in committing to planting trees to offset computing's environmental impact. Toshiba just last week said it's expanding its recycling program and registering its products with the Green Electronics Council's Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT)-an acronym that IT pros should get to know, as our article points out.

Most IT pros feel they don't have the luxury of pursuing green policies that increase their costs, unless there's a regulation to be met. For most, Green Computing's going to be a whole lot more about lower power bills and less about planting trees, or even recycling computers. Let us know if you think the tech world's taking the environment seriously enough, and what programs, products, and strategies are making the biggest difference at your company.

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