by Megan Berry

Green IT, or green computing, is manufacturing, using and disposing of PCs, servers, peripherals and other hardware in environmentally friendly ways. Green IT practices revolve around reducing energy consumption and disposing of equipment responsibly.

There are three ways in which green IT creates value for businesses, namely:

  • Cost savings – The ability to save money using green technology is a major reason why green IT is a hot topic these days. Reduced spending on equipment and energy, paper and ink, tax breaks and other financial incentives make green IT a practical way for companies to cut costs.
  • New sources of revenue – Environmental regulations created to address climate change force businesses to be environmentally friendly. Consequently, new economic opportunities exist. Supplying and servicing energy efficient equipment and developing green technology are just some of the ways in which companies can grow revenue and fuel job growth in a low-carbon economy.
  • Good PR – Investing in green IT, and telling people about it, is good PR. Polls indicate people believe global warming is a real threat and that more needs to be done to combat climate change. Companies demonstrating initiative in this area show they are responsive to investors, customers, and consumers alike.

Despite the fact that the business case for green IT is stronger than it has ever been, resistance to change, apathy, and competing priorities sometimes impede the adoption of green IT. However, such problems can be overcome through education and leadership, often by appointing Chief Sustainability Officers (CSOs).

Senior management positions tasked with leading companies toward more sustainable business practices have become common. Not only does it demonstrate a company’s commitment to sustainability, it puts someone with expertise in a position to influence others in the organization and push for change. For a green IT initiative to be successful, a person or a group must take the lead and coordinate company-wide efforts.

Sustainability officers need reliable data to make informed decisions around green IT initiatives. But environmental data is often fragmented and must be collected and analyzed from a holistic point of view. If reporting is not automated, it may be difficult to piece together a complete picture of a business’s carbon footprint. Energy management and carbon accounting software helps companies meet reporting requirements and turn disparate data into actionable information – a win-win for both the customer and the software vendor.

From saving money to fueling growth to demonstrating leadership, green IT creates value for businesses at every turn. Look for such practical business considerations to continue to drive the adoption of green IT well into the future.

About the Author: Megan is a senior editor for IT Manager Daily, covering the latest business technology and IT developments.  She’s authored numerous reports on whitepapers on how technology impacts companies.

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