10 Questions About Green Computing

cloud computing

10 Questions About Green Computing | The way we work, live and connect changes rapidly. Our lives move online. This turning reality of the digital world influences our physical world, too. Energy demands are increasing each year, and Industry 4.0. is all about energy consuming solutions. So, Green Computing isn’t a buzzword anymore than it used to be back then. It’s a necessity.

We tend to believe that Green Computing is about technologies that use sustainable energy sources for power. But is that the only application?

Green computing is closely related to the following topics:
Correct power management
Energy-saving and renewable sources of electricity
Working in a Cloud environment
Correct Disposal of technical devices, re-usage
Green IT Infrastructure – cooling
Regulation and restrictions
Industry associations
Education
Eco-friendly practices
IoT as a future of green computing

Correct Power Management

Correct power management minimizes the power consumed by a computer system.

Usually, this is achieved by close integration of Hardware and Software and means that each program is designed the most efficient way the hardware operates.

Another definition of power management is a special device that controls the right distribution of electricity between other devices.’ It’s so-called digital uninterruptable power supply device. It’s a must-have for large data centers and modern offices.

Nowadays, some companies try to change the standard paradigm of Electricity and create so-called “Digital Electricity”. This technology is about sending pulses of “packed” energy with almost no loss.

Energy Saving and renewable sources of electricity

Besides classical energy-saving devices, green computing is also being referred to as a renewable source of electricity, such as wind power, solar energy, etc.

There are many articles written about this topic. For sure it should be good for the environment, but the only catch is how the process of producing the equipment for that use renewable sources of energy is demanding in terms of electricity or materials.

For example, the process of producing solar panels is very energy demanding and there is much waste, so we should compare double side everything before any judgments.

Working in cloud

Green cloud computing is also about designing the cloud environment the most energy-efficient way. It includes the following practices of both correct resource management and sustainability.

Correct Disposal of technical devices, re-usage

Most modern companies tend to save resources and purchase refurbished devices for their employees instead of new ones. The refurbished device has new external parts, such as displays, keyboards, however, all internals are the same. This does not influence at all user experience but saves the costs for the companies. Correct disposal of all electronic devices should be must-have for IT companies today.

Green IT Infrastructure systems

Today, a substantial part of the energy consumed in many data centers goes for cooling. It’s highly important to include efficient heat transfer solutions that not only decrease the energy usage but also create new ways to use the heat which is generated in data centers.

There are a few important ways of using the heat:

– Urban Farming. This is a new global trend that is aimed to bring farming and growing different crops in Cities/Urban Territories. Usually, Urban Farming is closely related to Vertical Farming, which is growing food in closed conditions under LED lights.

These types of farms use/produce a lot of heat for preparing controlled conditions for plants. The heat generated from data centers could be used for Urban Farming.

– Heating of buildings and premises.

– Creating Energy. The heat from data centers could be used to move the water turbines and create electricity.

Regulations and restrictions

There are several worldwide regulations and evaluation tools that are being used to predict the environmental impact of IT and computers. Here are some of them:

– Energy star 4.0 Standard. This standard is used to estimate the power usage of devices in different modes, such as sleep, standby, overload, etc.

– Epeat. This is a special tool that helps users to select devices based on their environmental impact.

– RoHS Directive. This is a special restriction that controls the usage of various hazardous substances in Computers.

– The European Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive. This law requires IT producers to recycle used electronic devices free of charge.

Industry associations

There are some dedicated associations that deal with green computing. They aim to work with end companies and clients to solve all the issues related to the environmental impact of IT:

– Green Grid. This is a non-profit organization which aim is to measure the energy-related questions about the efficiency of data centers all around the globe.

– The Climate Savers Computing Initiative. This organization helps companies to choose the most energy-efficient strategies in their business development stages. It also helps to purchase the right equipment, computers, and software.

– The Uptime Institute. This organization provides consulting and educational services for companies interested in Green computing.

Education

It’s true to say that besides all regulations, laws, and restrictions each IT company’s “green strategy” comes from its owners and shareholders. And to make such strategies work each employee should be a part of the transformation process which includes standup meetings, discussions of day-to-day environmental issues. Software development specialists should learn how choosing different development strategies may influence the energy consumption and lifetime of the Hardware. QA specialist should apply their knowledge and use a test that relates to energy efficiency etc. Cloud computing is not about devices but about people that produce and use those devices.

Eco-Friendly practices

Each company that deals with IT could perform “green computing” actions, such as:

– Join local green IT communities

– Investigate local regulations and restrictions, get certificates

– Study current energy consumption of devices in offices and create a list of old devices that needs to be replaced

– Send old devices to special refurbishing organizations

– Move all software development in Cloud, investigate the best development strategies

– Hire specialists in the area of “green computing”

IoT as a future of green computing

You may notice that the modern world is rapidly transforming toward close interaction with IoT. Humans surround themselves with more and more portable devices.

The question of the energy efficiency of IoT will be the most important in the upcoming future. Many new companies will be working on the new frameworks of sensor enable wireless environment, such as Bluetooth low energy band.

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