Is green computing useful in order to save energy and money by reducing greenhouse gas emissions?

This report is about green computing. According to Murugesan(2008) Green Computing is ‘the study and practice of designing, manufacturing, using and disposing of computers, servers, and associated subsystems, such as monitors, printers, storage devices, and networking and communication systems, efficiently and effectively with minimal or no impact on environment’. It is clearly stated by Murugesan (2008) that ICT has an effect on our environment in many different ways. A computer, in every stage of its production, its use and generally of life, is a cause of environmental problems. Computers, and their components, production needs energy, water, chemicals and raw materials consumption and it derives dangerous waste. There is a continuous increase in the energy consumption by computers and its components, data communications systems, and cooling systems for data centers. This increase in energy consumption has as a result the increase in greenhouse gas emissions. Huge amounts of carbon dioxide are derived every year by each active PC. All the computer parts unfortunately contain toxic materials. More and more, consumers throw away a huge amount of old computers, their components and other electronic devices only two or three years after buying them and most of these end up in substandard facilities with toxic components polluting the earth and infecting the water.

As Smith (2013) claims, nowadays, if companies want to be successful they have to do three things and follow a green program. First is the energy efficiency program: Energy’s efficiency purpose is to maximize energy use and reduce the data centre amounts, to reduce the costs of the electricity use and corresponding global greenhouse gas impacts and computing efficiency in the IT infrastructure. Furthermore, energy’s efficiency purpose is to reduce the data centre levels, to reduce the electric utility costs and associated global greenhouse gas effects. Second is the power consumption program. This has to decrease the power consumption by updating the equipment, resulted in decreasing the greenhouse gas emissions. The third one is the Cooling system. Companies follow some strategies in order to cool their systems and save some energy.

New generation uses computers and electronic devises daily, leading to high energy consumption. Computer users can reduce the negative impact, which has been created using their computers and their electronic devices, doing some simple tips. Try to turn off your computer while you are sleeping or whenever your finish your work. This is possibly the most useful and logical way to save energy. Many computers or monitors, even when they are off, can consume energy from the cable they are connected to. Therefore, always remember to turn off the power of the cables, or other connectors you use. Secondly, try to avoid screensavers. They do not save power or keep your monitors in good health. Actually, they consume more energy than monitors that are allowed to get idle when they are not working. Additionally, avoid printing where it is not utterly necessary and never recycle toners. They can cause cancer. Last but not least, don’t buy a large screen if you don’t really need it, they consume more energy.

As for the benefits from green IT, businesses and individuals can have financial and other benefits. According to Lewis Curtis ‘Reduced energy consumption means reduced greenhouse gas emissions and reduced operational costs for the data center and businesses. It is clearly stated by Murugesan (2008) that ‘IT operations achieve better energy efficiency through green initiatives, which financially benefit them, especially when electrical energy is at a premium and energy prices are raising.’ In a survey carried out by Sun Microsystems Australia it came out that reducing energy consumption and lowering costs are the major reasons for using eco-responsible practices, followed by a lower environmental effect and improved system use.


[1] Dookhitram, K., Narsoo, J., Sunhaloo, M. S., Sukhoo, A. and Soobron, M. (2012)‘Green Computing: An Awareness Survey among University of Technology, Mauritius Students’. Tetiary Education Commission, Mauritius. [Online] [Accessed on 19th February 2015]

[2] Murugesan, S. (2008) Harnessing Green IT: Principles and Practices. University of Pittsburgh, pp 24-33

[3] Smith, B. (2013) ‘Green computing: tools and techniques for saving energy, money, and resources’. United Kingdom: Auer Bach Publishers Inc.

[4] Agarwal, N. (2013) ‘Green Computing Tips for Greener Environment’. The geeks Club. [Online][Accessed on 20th February 2015]

[5] Agarwal, S. and Nath, A. (2013) ‘A Practical Approach towards the Realization of Green ICT and Sustainability in Higher Education Institutes’. UGC Minor Research Project. [Online][Accessed on 17th February 2015]

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