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75% of IT Departments Strive to Reduce Energy Use

Seventy-five percent of U.S. organizations are working to reduce energy use in IT operations from the desktop to the data center, according to a report from CDW. The survey also finds that two-thirds of respondents understand that best practices in energy efficient IT is critical to their profession.

The report, “2010 Energy Efficient IT Report,” looks at the importance of energy efficiency among IT departments, as well as their energy-efficient measures and challenges they face. It also provides a snapshot of findings by the following sectors: business, federal government, state and local government, and K-12 and higher education.

CDW says organizations implement IT energy reduction efforts for two reasons: cost savings and reduced environmental impact. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that each basic office outfitted with an energy-efficient desktop computer, LCD monitor and multi-function device such as a printer/copy machine can save $365 throughout the life of the equipment, according to the tech solutions provider.

The report finds that 56 percent of organizations that are already actively managing IT energy use have reduced their annual IT energy costs by 1 percent or more, up from 39 percent in 2008.

Another key finding shows that energy efficiency is growing in importance with 39 percent of survey respondents stating that it is a very important consideration when purchasing new equipment, compared to 26 percent in 2009. (EL reported on CDW’s report in 2009.)

Companies are also taking innovative approaches to reducing IT energy use. The survey reveals that two-thirds are implementing at least one of the following measures:

–Deploying more power-efficient core switches (39 percent)

–Replacing edge and workgroup switches with more power-efficient switches (30 percent)

–Using the network as a platform to manage and reduce energy use (24 percent)

–Adopting 10GB Ethernet, Infiniband technologies (23 percent)

–Reducing storage area network infrastructure by implementing Fibre-channel Over Ethernet (FcOE) (21 percent)

–Moving to top-of-rack models for access layer switching (19 percent)

Another key finding indicates that many companies are consolidating data centers as a way to cut energy costs. Seventy-nine percent of organizations have or are developing a strategy to consolidate servers, storage devices, power management tools and other equipment that comprise data centers. Sixty percent of those companies say reducing energy consumption is a top driver for consolidation, second only to reducing data center hardware, software and operations expenditures (61 percent).

CDW’s third annual report is based on a July survey of 756 IT professionals in the public and private sectors who purchase IT equipment.

To help global IT organizations reduce their networking energy use, the Climate Savers Computing Initiative launched a new industry workgroup that will develop energy efficiency targets and best practices for networking technologies. This will include improving the energy efficiency of networking equipment such as routers, switches and connected devices that power everything from the Internet to mobile technologies.

The goal is to reduce networking energy use by 2015. Climate Savers Computing estimates that the global IT industry can reduce CO2 emissions by 38 million metric tons by 2015 through the deployment of more energy-efficient networking equipment worldwide. That is equivalent to $5 billion in energy cost savings and 51 billion KWh in energy savings, enough to avoid the use of more than nine coal-fired power plants, according to the initiative.

Climate Savers Computing says research has shown that a workplace can reduce its energy use by more than 10 percent through conservation practices and networking efficiency measures, and for businesses, reducing networking energy use will help realize efficiencies and cut operational costs as well as decrease environmental impact.

The Networking Workgroup consists of global tech companies including Cisco, CompTIA, Emerson Network Power, Finisar, HP, Intel, Juniper Networks, and Sony Electronics.

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2 thoughts on “75% of IT Departments Strive to Reduce Energy Use

  1. It is the same in the UK. Not only is reducing energy consumption important for IT managers but also having a large % of it from renewable sources. There is a lot that can be done to reduce consumption; virtualisation, lighting, cooling and employee behaviour can all be looked at to reduce consumption.

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