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Gartner: ICT’s CO2 Emissions ‘Unsustainable’

The global information and communications technology industry accounts for approximately two percent of global carbon dioxide emissions, a figure equivalent to aviation, according to a new estimate by Gartner Despite the overall environmental value of IT, Gartner believes this is unsustainable.

Gartner recommends IT organizations develop a strategy to address the current negative effects of using ICT. The growth in power requirements and levels of waste that it produces renders the current state unsustainable. Such a strategy would include:

  • Start measuring power consumption,
  • Consume fewer servers and printers by increasing utilization – virtualize servers,
  • Stop over-provisioning; improve capacity planning,
  • Improve the efficiency of cooling,
  • Turn power management on, use a low power state or turn equipment off after hours,
  • Extend the life of assets by reusing within the enterprise and externally,
  • Ensure and validate the correct disposition of all electronic equipment, and
  • Analyze all waste.

Once initiatives are in place to reduce the negative effect of using ICT, Gartner recommends IT leaders develop initiatives that leverage ICT to reduce the enterprise’s overall environmental presence. Examples would include implementing travel-substitution applications or CSR compliance information management.

This will lead to 50 percent of IT organizations declaring an environmental imperative by 2010, and more than one third of IT organizations having one or more environmental criteria in their top six buying criteria.

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