Analysts see red over lack of green activity

The time of viewing being green technology-wise as an opt in or opt out decision is over and businesses must now live up to their responsibilities, analyst Butler Group has warned.

As well as having serious energy implications, the financial cost to businesses for not being more resource-savvy tallies hundreds of millions of pounds each year.

The analyst's words of warning are backed up by other industry bodies who are worried about energy usage as it stands today as well as how it looks set to spiral in the future.

Government-back non-profit organisation the Carbon Trust believes that office equipment will account for almost a third (30 per cent) of the UK's total energy consumption by 2020. That's exactly double the amount it represents today, highlighting the need for an immediate sea change in activity.

Green IT is no longer an option; it's a necessity, according to Butler Group's senior research analyst Richard Edwards.

"...IT Has a Terawatt appetite - 'Green IT' should be a topic of discussion for all senior executives...," he said.

"PC monitors and system units account for around two-thirds of office energy consumption, while photocopiers and printers consume around 25% of the total. These figures are based on an office with 10 PCs, a photocopier, a fax machine and a laser printer, and so with larger organisations typically having much higher ratios of PC equipment to printers and photocopiers, then clearly this is where management needs to focus.

"Leaving computers, lights, and other office equipment switched on wastes an estimated 150 million worth of electricity in English offices every year. A typical desktop PC, with a CRT monitor, will consume around 240 worth of electricity over a four-year life span. A laptop, however, will consume only around a quarter of this amount depending on its specification, and so organisations should consider their equipment purchases carefully."

Butler Group's cautionary views are not in isolation.

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Maggie Holland

Maggie has been a journalist since 1999, starting her career as an editorial assistant on then-weekly magazine Computing, before working her way up to senior reporter level. In 2006, just weeks before ITPro was launched, Maggie joined Dennis Publishing as a reporter. Having worked her way up to editor of ITPro, she was appointed group editor of CloudPro and ITPro in April 2012. She became the editorial director and took responsibility for ChannelPro, in 2016.

Her areas of particular interest, aside from cloud, include management and C-level issues, the business value of technology, green and environmental issues and careers to name but a few.