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How Green IT Can Save Money and the Environment

How Green IT Can Save Money and the Environment



Green Technology can help you reduce waste and therefore save your organization money and make your nonprofit story more robust. We will review some easy changes that can help make your nonprofit more ...

Green Technology can help you reduce waste and therefore save your organization money and make your nonprofit story more robust. We will review some easy changes that can help make your nonprofit more environmentally friendly, without breaking the bank or having to convince everyone to change their personal habits. Presentation at the Montana Nonprofit Association Annual Conference.



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  • Increase efficiency and collaboration, happy IT person or happy use, a happy board
  • Power management, Auto-Duplexing printers and copiers, install print management tools, use online video/collaboration tools
  • Extend the life of existing computers, buy refurbished instead of new, buy EPEAT Silver or Gold, using smart or timered power strips, switch to hosted services, donate working electronics to responsible refurbishers, consider multi-function devices

How Green IT Can Save Money and the Environment How Green IT Can Save Money and the Environment Presentation Transcript

  • September 28, 2010 Greening Your Nonprofit's IT: How to Save the Environment and Money Anna S. Jaeger Co-Director of GreenTech TechSoup Global [email_address] www.techsoup.org/greentech
  • An Introduction to Green Software, Hardware, and Practices
    • The Learning Objective: Experience and learn about a wide array of green technology options and how they can save you money
    • Take Aways:
    • Reduce waste, save money, and make your nonprofit story more robust
    • Easy changes that won’t break the bank
    • Situational changes so you don’t have to convince everyone to change their personal habits.
    • Learn about some great technologies.
  • We are working toward a time when every nonprofit and social benefit organization on the planet has the technology resources and knowledge they need to operate at their full potential
  • TechSoup is an integrated offering of the Resources, Knowledge, and Connections that NPO ’ s need to effectively use technology to advance their work
  • Mission of GreenTech
    • Help nonprofits and NGOs reduce their environmental impact through the effective use of technology.
    • ____________________
    • We help you, reduce the impact of your IT and use IT to reduce the impact of your organization.
    www.techsoup.org/greentech @TSGreenTech
  • Please Ask Questions
    • What are some things you would specifically like to learn today?
    • ____________________
    • As we go along, please feel free to ask questions.
  • Valuable Prizes
    • Pay attention, I have prizes to give away, but you must answer questions based on the presentation!
  • Your Technical Experience Poll
    • Technical Experience:
    • Accidental Techie
    • Some Technical Experience
    • Solid Tech Experience
    • Advanced
  • Quick Audience Poll
    • Knowledge of Green IT
    • Beginner
    • Intermediate
    • Advanced
  • Why Green Your IT? Images are CC, click on image for attribution. Compelling Technology
  • Green IT Generally Encompases:
    • IT electricity reduction
    • Paper reduction
    • Travel reduction
    • IT hardware reduction
    • Extending the life of your IT equipment
    • Procuring IT equipment that uses less electricity and has fewer toxics
    • Properly disposing of all e-waste
    • Cloud computing
  • Three Categories
    • Green Software
    • Green Practices
    • Green Hardware
  • Green Software Definition
    • Software that can help you directly green your IT. Software that reduces the use of energy by IT equipment.
    • Another category: Software that helps you green your organization. Addressed in Green Practices section.
    • Note : some of these are just good technologies, and their “green” potential is simply an additional benefit
  • ICT Emissions & Energy Consumption 2% 5% Slide by David Deal of Community IT Innovators
  • Green Software
    • Power Management
    • Virtualization – Desktop and Server
    • Software as a Service (Cloud)
  • Green Software
    • Power Management
  • Power Management Definition
    • Software that allows you to control the various power settings on your computer.
    • These often include:
      • Monitor sleep
      • Hard drive spin down
      • Computer sleep/standby
      • Computer hibernate
  • Power Management Stats
    • The average desktop PC wastes nearly half of the energy it consumes as heat.
    • Using power management can save nearly half a ton of CO2 & approx. $60/year/comp in energy costs.
    • Stats from Climate Savers Computing
    • Cut PC energy use up to 70%, save about $50 per desktop (NRDC)
    • Workstations represent 3 times the energy consumption of the server room
  • Power Management on Windows Windows 7 has a lot more ways to be energy efficient. It also has wizards that will flag the areas where you can save.
  • Power Management Settings
    • My recommendations:
      • Monitor sleep after 5 min
      • Hard drives to sleep after 10 min
      • System Sleep after 20 min
      • Be more aggressive if on battery
    • Consider joining Climate Savers Computing
  • Power Management Tools
    • Individual (free) solutions:
      • Built-in tools (windows & macs)
      • Verdiem’s Edison
    • Enterprise tools:
      • Verdiem Surveyor
      • Faronics PowerSave
  • Green Software: Virtualization Slide by Peter Campbell of Earth Justice
  • Warning!
  • Virtualization Definition
    • Two main Types:
    • Desktop
    • Server
    • Some Benefits:
    • Reduced capital expenditures
    • Fewer machines requiring power to run
    • Fewer machines built, transported and disposed of
    Use one computer as many. Run multiple operating systems on one physical box.
    • Virtualization
    Slide by David Deal of Community IT Innovators
  • Virtualization Poll
    • How many of you are already using virtualized servers or desktops?
    • Virtualization Stats
    Slide by David Deal of Community IT Innovators
    • Stats: Server Virtualization
    • Energy reduction up to 82%
    • Small & medium-sized NPO’s (<100 PCs) often virtualize 4-8 servers on 1 physical server
    • TechRepublic estimates that individual servers use as little as 5% of their processing power even though they’re draining resources by being plugged in and running 24 hours a day.
    Slide by David Deal of Community IT Innovators
  • Our Own Case Study
    • The project took several months and had a number of benefits to us : 
    • Data Center: Consolidated 18 servers 4 46% savings in electricity each month Saved us $30,000 for remote server control hardware.
    • Headquarters: Consolidated 60 servers 4 72% savings in electricity each month
    • Saved us $40,000 in upgrades we didn't need to do to our server room cooling system.
    • $24,000 annual savings in server administration time by cutting server administration time by 40 to 50 hours a month. Software crashes on the new virtualized system have also decreased.
    • New virtual servers are much faster and easier to install without needing additional space or cabling.
  • Virtualization Tools
    • Commercial (most have free versions)
      • VMWare (Server, Desktop)
      • Citrix Xen Server and Desktop
      • Microsoft Virtual Server, Windows Server 2008
    • Open Source
      • Xen (Open Source version of Citrix product)
      • VirtualBox
    • (Server-based) Desktop Virtualization
      • Desktop virtualization makes energy savings possible by allowing the use of terminals instead of desktops or laptops
      • Also, roaming access = travel reduction!
    Slide by David Deal of Community IT Innovators
  • Green Software: SaaS
    • Software as a Service (Cloud)
    Image from: http://www.eci.com/blog/25-why-cloud-computing-is-right-for-your-hedge-fund.html
  • Software as a Service Definition
    • “SaaS: Hosted software refers to the use of software and data that is hosted on a vendor’s servers and accessed over the Internet rather than installed on a desktop computer or an in-house server. This offers significant environmental advantages, and typically also simplifies IT administration. ”
    • David Deal in Greening Your IT Through Your Software Choices
  • Cloud Computing Stats
    • IDC forecasts that from 2009 through 2014
    • Worldwide IT product spending will grow at an annual rate of 5.0%
    • Spending on Cloud Services will increase at an annual rate of 27%, i.e., _very_ fast.
    • Non-Cloud IT product spending will grow at an annual rate of 3.3%, i.e., positively, but slowly.
    • Source: IDC’s Public IT Cloud Services Forecast: New Numbers, Same Disruptive Story
  • SaaS Common Examples
    • Software as a Service
      • Document Sharing - Google docs, Office Live, Zoho
      • CRM solutions – Salesforce, Blackbaud
      • Backup - Mozy
      • Collaboration/Training tools – ReadyTalk, WebEx, GoToMeeting, Unified Communication Tools
      • Social Networking: Facebook, Twitter, Flickr
      • HR Tools: Performance Reviews, Payroll
      • Project Management: Basecamp
  • Cloud Economics
    • Decreased captial costs
    • Usually, increased operating costs
    • Example 1: Preferred Hotel
      • Traditional: $210k server refresh and $10k/month
      • Cloud: $10k implementation and $16k/month
    • Example 2: Nevada Crisis Call Center
      • Trimmed technology management work by $20,000 annually
      • Eliminated a recurring capital expense of $15,000
      • More reliable IT services
  • Benefits of Cloud Computing
    • Little to no upfront costs : watch out for recurring operating costs.
    • No IT staff required : Ok, this might be an oversimplification, but many applications available in the cloud require much less in-house IT support because the hosting provider takes care of installs, upgrades, backups and standard maintenance for you.
    • No servers need to be researched, purchased, maintained, or recycled.
    • Rapid deployment: Often, accounts can be set up in minutes. More complicated pieces of software (CRM, accounting packages, donor management software) still require more set up and probably training.
    • Convenience: Staff and volunteers can access your applications from almost any Internet connection with their login information. No more setting up VPNs or systems to allow remote access to your servers.
  • Green Benefits
    • Fewer servers are built and running:
      • fewer toxic materials and water used to build them
      • fewer toxic materials are dumped
      • less energy is consumed in the running of the servers
    • Less powerful client computers: all the processing is performed on the hosted server(s).
      • keep your older computers longer
      • reduces demand for new computers
  • Risks of Cloud Computing
    • Loss of connectivity: If you have a slow or unreliable connection, cloud computing isn't right for your mission-critical needs.
    • Service levels: Ensure reputable provider & provides an acceptable level of uptime & rapid response to issues.
    • Regulatory compliance: If you need to be HIPAA - or PCI-compliant or conform to other regulations, make sure your service provider is certified.
    • Backups: Make sure you have copies of and access to your data, especially if your service should fail.
    • Security: There are a variety of concerns about storing sensitive client data in the cloud due to privacy and security standards, that include data security for phishing, spamming, and hacking concerns. The jury is still out on some of these issues, so for the time-being, we recommend caution when storing sensitive financial or personal information about your supporters and clients online.
  • Prize Give Away!
    • Name a benefit, a green benefit, and a risk of Cloud Computing
    • Extra credit: Why should you care?
  • Green Software
    • More info about green software:
    • Greening Your IT Through Your Software Choices
    • Comparing Online vs. Traditional Office Software
    • Why Should Nonprofits Care About Cloud Computing?
    • GreenTech Energy Pages
  • Questions on Green Software?
  • Green Practices
    • Acquiring “green” hardware and software means little if you use them in an inefficient way.
    • Use IT to “green” your operations
    • How you use your IT Systems is just as important as which systems you use.
    • Keep in mind that expecting people to change their habits will lead to frustration. Instead set up automated solutions.
    • Utilizing Software to Green Operations
    • Reduce:
      • Travel: Both for trips and commuting
      • Energy consumption
      • Paper/toner consumption
      • Data storage resources
    • Travel Reduction: Brief Case Study
    • Reduce commuter and business travel
    • Travel contributes to 50% of CITI’s total emissions
      • (even with 75% of travel done via public transit, biking, and walking!)
    • Ingredients: Remote & mobile access to ICT resources - data, voice, video
    • Numerous studies confirming moderate to significant positive environmental impact
    Slide by David Deal of Community IT Innovators
    • Travel: Working with Distributed Teams
    • Web conferencing:
      • GoToMeeting, WebEx, ReadyTalk
    • File sharing:
      • Box.net, Dropbox, Jungle Disk, Google Docs, BPOS/SharePoint
    • Comprehensive hosted apps:
      • Zoho, Google Apps, MS BPOS+Office Web Apps
    • Extranets/project collaboration:
      • Basecamp, SharePoint
    Slide by David Deal of Community IT Innovators More details at the TechSoup Travel Reduction Pages.
    • Travel: Video
    • Peer-to-peer, small groups:
      • Skype
      • VuRoom add-on allows for group video
      • Quality?
    • Hosted, better for groups:
      • WebEx (for up to 6 people)
    Slide by David Deal of Community IT Innovators
  • Practices – Reduce Energy Use
    • Put your systems to sleep : Climate Savers Computing and Reduce Energy Use Campaign
    • Unplug unused hardware , including cell phone chargers, handsets, and old computers when not needed. Or plug into powerstrips and turn them off.
    • How you power your electronics: Renewable sources for electricity, solar power chargers, rechargable batteries
    • Explore cloud computing: Comparing Online vs. Traditional Office Software
    • Larger orgs : HVAC systems, auto room lighting
  • Reduce Your Paper Use
    • Set defaults on office software,
      • double-sided printing
      • margins of 0.7 inches all the way around
      • print in Draft Mode
    More tips at the TechSoup Paper Reduction Campaign Pages
  • Reduce Your Paper Use
    • Install GreenPrint or FinePrint
      • Free print management software will likely save you money by reducing the printing of unintended pages.
      • More info on our blog .
      • Look for ecofont
    • Reduce Your Paper Use
    • Provides a preview window in which you can deselect unneeded pages
    • Makes the duplexing option more easily accessible
    Slide by David Deal of Community IT Innovators
  • Practices – Reduce Resources
    • Examine data storage – consider carefully what to keep and where to keep it. (i.e., file servers/email)
    Image source: http://www.chra.army.mil/Talent_Acquisition/On_Board/Onboard.htm
    • Key Takeaways for Green Practices:
    • Easy step:
      • Implement desktop power management software/settings
    • More involved step:
      • Look at ways to reduce travel through remote and mobile access to IT and communications resources
    • Next time you upgrade servers:
      • Replace with cloud applications, or consolidate servers using virtualization software
    Slide by David Deal of Community IT Innovators
  • Questions on Green Practices?
  • Prize Give Away
    • Name 2 or more things you learned that you can do right now to start saving money and being greener?
    • Either using software or changing practices
  • Part 2: Green Hardware
    • Hardware that is designed to minimize the use of toxic materials and energy . Hardware is now being rated on criteria like packaging, transport and design for reuse.
    • In this category are also items that allow you to eliminate hardware like hosted services .
    • Computers and other electronics are the fastest-growing (and among the least recycled) components of the waste stream
    • All electronics devices with circuit boards contain toxic substances
    • Two million tons of used electronics discarded yearly – only 18% of TVs and PCs are recycled, 10% of cell phones
    • See TechSoup GreenTech’s Hardware and Toxics Reduction pages
    Electronics Waste Stats Stats from the EPA
  • Shocking Stats – Law Berkeley Labs
    • http://standby.lbl.gov/summary-table.html
    Major Drop Minor Drop Units are in watts Desktop Notebook LCD On 73.97 (idle) 29.48 (charged) 27.61 Sleep 21.13 15.77 1.38 Off 2.84 8.9 1.13
  • Green Hardware Stats
    • A new ENERGY STAR compliant PC or laptop uses 15 to 25 percent less energy on average than a standard new computer.
    • EPEAT: 23 eco-friendly criteria
    • Refurbished: 50-70% of the lifetime energy consumption of a computer is used before it is ever turned on.
    • Thin-Clients: Energy reduction from 80-100W desktop or 20-40W laptop to 6-8W terminal
  • Procurement: Selecting greener hardware
    • Refurbished
    • Reduced Impact: Thin clients
    • Eliminate hardware: Hosted Services
  • Energy Star
    • Joint program between EPA & DOE provide energy efficient products and practices
    • Energy management can produce twice the savings—both the bottom line and the environment
    • Caution: Program is voluntary & self-audited
    • www.energystar.gov
    http://earth911.com/news/2010/04/08/fake-products-receive-energy-star-certification/ Slide by Robin Billings of the EPA
    • It is:
    • a tool,
    • an environmental standard,
    • a rating system,
    • & a verification program
    • System that helps purchasers evaluate, compare and select electronic products based on their environmental attributes
    • www.epeat.net
    Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) Slide by Robin Billings of the EPA
  • EPEAT EPEAT Criteria are known as (IEEE 1680) American National Standard for the Environmental Assessment of Personal Computer Products Slide by Robin Billings of the EPA Meets all 23 required criteria plus at least 75% of the optional criteria Meets all 23 required criteria plus at least 50% of the optional criteria Meets all 23 required criteria                                                                                          
  • Slide by Robin Billings of the EPA
  • Slide by Robin Billings of the EPA
  • EPEAT Poll
    • Please raise your hands…
    • Do your organizations already purchase EPEAT rated hardware?
  • Buying products made from recycled materials is a key step in supporting recycling programs and resource conservation. Resources are saved only when recycled products are purchased. This is referred to as closing the loop . Buy Recycled/Refurbished Slide by Robin Billings of the EPA
  • Sources of Refurbished Computers
    • Manufacturers like Dell and Apple
    • National refurbishers like RedemTech
    • Local refurbishers like Next Step Recycling in Eugene Oregon
    • Nonprofits and Libraries: TechSoup.org
    • Some advice: Consumer Watch: Refurbished PCs--Sweet Deals or Lemons?
  • TSG: Refurbished Computer Initiative
    • 17, 000 - # of product distributed (includes desktops, notebooks, and monitors)
    • 6,050 - # of orgs served
    • Green impact as a result of equipment reuse:
      • Enough energy saved to power 3,821 US households for an entire year
      • Greenhouse gas savings equivalency of removing 1,670 passenger cars off the road for a year
    • $2.1M – Approximate sector savings
    • 5% - quality: issue rate rivaling that of brand new equipment.
  • RCI Story: Village Northwest Unlimited, Sheldon, Iowa
    • “ We’re just tickled to get 23 donations since last November for our computer lab and other programs like our brain injury ‘Empathy Stations’ … To me it’s a win/win: it’s green, it’s recyclable, and very useable.”
    • – Terry Ashland, Technology Coordinator
    • The Village is an independent living residential center for 180 people ages 17-70 suffering from brain injuries, cerebral palsy, autism, Down syndrome, and epilepsy.
  • Thin Clients
    • Examples:
    • N Computing – terminal services
    • PanoLogic – proprietary software
    • HP, Howard, Seneca - Windows MultiPoint Server
    • Software that enables thin clients
    • Citrix XenDesktop
  • Hardware In the Cloud
    • In the Cloud:
    • IaaS: Infrastructure as a service
    • PaaS: Platform as a service
    • SaaS: Software as a Service (previously discussed)
  • Cloud Computing
    • “One of the biggest opportunities for decreasing an organization’s power and equipment usage is through the use of hosted software.… This offers significant environmental advantages, and typically also simplifies IT administration. ”
    • David Deal in Greening Your IT Through Your Software Choices
  • Examples of Cloud Providers
    • Google – App Engine (PaaS)
    • Amazon – EC2 and S3(IaaS)
    • Microsoft – Azure (IaaS and PaaS)
    • Caution: Make IT Green: Cloud Computing and its Contribution to Climate Change
  • Eliminate the Need for Hardware
    • Hosted services:
    • Virtual PBX – Telecom routing
    • VoIP – potentially eliminate your phone
    • Electronic fax services like MyFax and eFax
    • Green Host for Websites
  • Questions for Green Hosting Providers
    • When selecting a provider, consider these items:
    • $$: most are comparable or better than traditional hosts
    • Ease of startup
    • Features
    • Reliability
    • How green are they? Do they buy carbon off-sets or power their operations with their own solar panels? Do they virtualize their servers? Are they certified by anyone?
    • Lists of Green Web Hosts
      • webhostinggeeks.com
      • TreeHugger
      • WebHostingReport.com
      • http:// twitter.com/greenwebsites
  • Peripherals & Printing
    • Smart Power Strips
    • Timer Power Strips
    • Kill-A-Watt
    • Make sure to turn off unused equipment:
      • modems,
      • servers,
      • telecom equipment,
      • hotel machines,
      • peripherals (power strip)
    • Multi-Function Devices : One machine for printer, copier, fax and scanner
    • Auto-Print Duplexing
    • Ratio of printers to people - fewer larger devices rather than personal printers
  • eWaste – Keeping it Useful
    • TechSoup: Extend the life of your hardware
    • Planet Green: Extend Your PC's Life With A Tune-Up
    • eHow: How to Extend Your Computer's Life
  • Plug-in to eCycling - Donating www.epa.gov/plugin Info on how to prepare and donate your computer for reuse
  • Safe Hardware Disposal
    • Use manufacturers’ take back programs.
    http:// www.computertakeback.com/corporate/who_takes_back.htm http://www.electronicstakeback.com/recycling/find_a_responsible_recycler.htm
  • Finding Responsible Recyclers
    • http://search.earth911.com/?what= Computer+Recycling
    http://e-stewards.org/find-a-recycler /
  • Prize Give Away
    • Name 2 or more easy things you learned that you can do to reduce waste via hardware that doesn’t require your staff and volunteers to change their habits?
  • Conclusion
    • Going green doesn’t necessarily mean you have to spend more money. It can often save money.
    • Changing the situation is easier than changing behaviors.
    • Use greener software, buy greener hardware and set up defaults to automatically stop waste rather than asking your staff to change.
    • Talk with your board, staff, volunteers and/or consultants. Decide which is the best first step for your organization.
    • Spread the word
  • More Info
    • Questions?
    • www.techsoup.org/greentech
  • Thank you!
    • More Info:
    • Come to www.techsoup.org/greentech to find other tips and suggestions.
    Anna S. Jaeger TechSoup Global [email_address] www.techsoup.org @TSGreenTech