Microsoft launches website to help customers choose eco-friendly PCs

Green IT

Microsoft has launched a new website to help people find eco-friendly computers.

The website, dubbed "Greener IT Challenge", could help users find and buy certified PCs that have been "manufactured in more environmentally sustainable ways."

The website will also suggest ways in which people can use computers more efficiently in terms of energy use. Part of the website is devoted to ways in which old computers can be disposed of safely or reused and recycled to minimise the impact to the environment.

We have policies in place on buying greener PCs ... and disposing of old machines properly so they don't end up in landfill.

The site has both video and text about environmentally friendly PCs, their use, and their disposal. It has links to green IT standards, including EPEAT, e-Stewards, WEEELabex, Energy Star, and R2 Solutions.

Writing in a blog post, Josh Henretig, Microsoft's Environmental Sustainability group manager, said that his firm's commitment to greener buying decisions isn't only a resource for others, but also signifies that the company is practising what it preaches.

"In fiscal year 2013, Microsoft recycled over 37,000 PCs," he said. "We have policies in place on buying greener PCs, configuring them to use the power-saving features in the Windows operating system and disposing of old machines properly so they don't end up in landfill."

Henretig claimed that last year, Microsoft outlined energy saving practices in a white paper that would reduce the environmental impact of PCs used by the company and added that as a result of these practices, it lowered energy consumption by 32 per cent, reduced the company's CO2 emissions and saved money.

According to Henretig, Microsoft continues to work with firm and groups around the world to "dispose of unwanted or outdated technology and refurbish it for others in need, allowing old electronics to find new life and stay out of landfills."

Microsoft appears to have come a long way in its journey to more sustainable computing practices. As reported by IT Pro last year, The firm came under intense criticism from eco-campaigners Greenpeace in its use of nuclear and coal to provide energy for its cloud datacentres.

Rene Millman

Rene Millman is a freelance writer and broadcaster who covers cybersecurity, AI, IoT, and the cloud. He also works as a contributing analyst at GigaOm and has previously worked as an analyst for Gartner covering the infrastructure market. He has made numerous television appearances to give his views and expertise on technology trends and companies that affect and shape our lives. You can follow Rene Millman on Twitter.