I spoke this morning with Ned Renzi, a partner in Pittsburgh-based VC Birchmere Ventures, and he's the first investor I've talked to about the whole "green" computing phenomenon who's been able to capture why some CIOs are starting to pay attention to the concept, and why all should start thinking about it soon. And the reason isn't solely based on an inconvenient truth...Renzi says CIOs, including University of Pittsburgh Medical Center CIO Dan Drawbaugh (InformationWeek's most recent Chief of the Year), are telling him that they're paying attention to concepts that just two years ago didn't even register a blip on the radar. Those include end-to-end IT asset disposal and recycling, power consumption in the data center, and alternative energies. One big reason why CIOs need to pay attention to these concepts, says Renzi: at many companies, the cost for energy consumption in the corporation is being allocated out to the business units in tangible budget line items. And in some cases, compensation is being tied to keeping those costs down. In the CIO's budget, that means keeping those huge data center energy costs under control. So no matter what your belief in global warming, when compensation and performance evaluation are involved, it becomes an issue that matters very, very locally.