Social Enterprise

Sanity check: Green IT - Does it matter for business?

Hear the arguments for why Green IT is one of the next big trends in tech, and hear the counterpoints for simply labeling it an inconsequential fad. Plus, get a perspective on the impact Green IT could have on how IT does business.

In early 2005, the collective will was building for energy conservation and environmental good citizenship -- at least that's the way it felt if you were living in San Francisco, California. The rest of the United States hadn't decided to take those issues seriously yet.

But that was before gasoline spiked to $3.50 per gallon. It was before Hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans. It was before a string of three summers with record heat. And it was before the movie An Inconvenient Truth drastically changed the public perception of human-induced climate change and the potential crisis that it could induce.

Those issues combined with the fact that the technology world is centered in environmentally-conscious Northern California have led to the nascent concept of "Green IT." Because the concept is new, it's useful to take a look at what Green IT is, why its proponents see it as one of the next big trends in IT, and why its detractors think the whole concept is flawed.

What is Green IT?

Green IT is the technology industry's way of asking itself what role it should play in the global movement toward building a more sustainable civilization. The answer is typically three-fold:

  1. Minimize energy use
  2. Reduce CO2 emissions
  3. Better manage electronic waste

Why Green IT is important

While many in Silicon Valley and in the environmental movement have very altruistic reasons for pursuing green initiatives -- "passing on a sustainable world to our children" -- there are also very pragmatic reasons that this is becoming a major concern for businesses:

  • The cost of energy
  • Concerns over the future supply of energy
  • Exploding use of energy as data centers expand
  • Threat of government regulation of energy consumption
  • First targets for Kyoto Protocol (reducing greenhouse gases) coming in 2008-2012
  • Growing political support for managing and regulating CO2 emissions

"You need to pay attention to green IT issues now and have plans in place to move yourself forward. If you fail to do so, you face serious risks in the next five years," said Martin Reynolds, a Gartner Managing Vice President, at the recent Gartner Sympsium ITxpo on Emerging Technologies, where Green IT was the topic of five different sessions.

"If the climate science and carbon abatement projections are close to being correct, and assuming society is willing and able to respond, then we are headed toward a low-carbon economy," according to Simon Mingay, Research Vice President at Gartner. Mingay defines a low-carbon economy as "an economy in which the growth of greenhouse gas emissions is halted and reduced, and in which greenhouse gases have a cost and/or are capped, enforced through one or more measures."

Kyoto was one of the first steps down that road.

Why some call Green IT a fad or a myth

As a hot new concept, Green IT also has its critics -- even within the same analyst organizations that trumpet it. For example, French Caldwell, another Research VP at Gartner, calls Green IT "a myth." However, he's not saying that Green IT is pure fiction. He is talking about a myth in the literal sense -- a simplified story that is used to explain a much more complex set of circumstances so that the masses can understand it.

Charles Smulders, Gartner Managing VP, went even further. He said that vendors are doing a lot of "greenwashing" right now to sell Green IT products, while IT is responsible for just two percent of global CO2 emissions. He said that population explosion is a much greater concern for CO2 emissions and that attention should be directed toward that. He also claimed that measuring CO2 emissions isn't consistent and so it's difficult for IT to even gauge its status.

At the Symposium on Emerging Trends, Caldwell also argued that some people grasp on to concepts like "Green IT" with religious fervor in order to feel like they are doing something good for the environment. He thinks it's much more useful for IT to simply focus on reducing power consumption.

However, Caldwell admitted, "The Green IT myth is useful in building business cases for infrastructure and investment renewal, and for improving the corporation's license to operate."

Bottom line for IT leaders

Green IT is essentially a rallying call for tech to take a proactive approach in its role to energy conservation, climate change, and electronic waste. In some cases, this can also have a very positive effect on the bottom line -- especially in relation to energy savings. For example, IBM plans to save $250 million in power costs over five years as part of its current data center consolidation.

The other two areas -- climate change (CO2 emissions) and electronic waste -- could soon become economic imperatives if and when governments start regulating them and associating fines with non-compliance. This could be coming sooner rather than later. In April, executives of energy utilities ranked the environment and greenhouse gas regulations at the top of their lists of current concerns.

IT organizations should expect to come under scrutiny for their practices in relation to Green IT, in the same way that Google is being put under the microscope for its policies and approach. So I would recommend running a fire drill to put yourself under the microscope first, so that you have a good idea of where you stand. I expect some best practices for doing a Green IT self-audit to emerge during 2008.

About

Jason Hiner is Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He writes about the people, products, and ideas changing how we live and work in the 21st century. He's co-author of the upcoming book, Follow the Geeks (bit.ly/ftgeeks).

63 comments
Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

and the competition can out green them, then obviously. Selling your waste instead of paying for it to be taken away, now there's an economically unsound idea. :p Reducing your need for raw materials and thereby your costs, that will never catch on. To quote the Ellen Ripley, did IQs suddenly drop while I was away? FFS Of course it's good for business if it increases profits. If it didn't, no one would be doing it would they?

BALTHOR
BALTHOR

And we want our hybrids to have 2000 mpg as per design.

crisem
crisem

I'm not into buying the idea that too much CO2 is what's causing the greenhouse effect, I still say it's the cycle of our mother earth! wherein geographical alignment will be altered sometime in our future as what have happened to the past. - crism

memberships
memberships

You must be a fool if you take the propaganda movie Inconvenient Truth seriously. It has been widely discredited and even a court in England officially declared that it contains at least 10 or so inaccuracies and must be preceded be a disclaimer if it is to be show in public schools. But stupid fools like you still continue to lick it up. I really love the part in the beginning when you claim that only until a few years ago only those in San Francisco took energy issues seriously. What a bunch of elitist BS and you wonder why San Fran-sicko is a laughing stock and a national disgrace.

Rawbit
Rawbit

How stupid is that! This is another stupid socialist (and communist) ploy to increase governmental controls and take away freedoms. Why don't we just ground planes and cruise ships from pleasure travel? That is equivalent to probably years of CO2 emissions. Does anyone know what the equivalent of one jet flight has compared to IT departments? Trees give of CO2 in the day and oxygen at night; will they now make laws to only cut down trees in the morning? After all the C02 brainwashing, maybe we will forbid jogging and other strenuous exercise where we exhale increased levels of CO2. Maybe this will give a nice push to euthanasia too. Stupid, stupid, stupid. Let's get off the wagon; the band sounds horrible.

verd
verd

NO I do not buy into the concept of this or man made global warming, Al Gore's movie is trash and can be refuted very easy. I don't have time to waste on concepts that are worthless and I know my network clients feel the same way. Not all of us are "tree huggers."

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

I said that it changed public perception, because it has. I'm very well aware of the rebuttals against Inconvenient Truth. However, that's not going to change the fact that it has motivated a lot more people, politicians, and governments to adopt it's point of view. IT will likely have to deal with the consequences of new regulations in power consumption and CO2 emissions. The whole ideological battle over the environment doesn't really matter. You can flip a coin and believe whatever you want to believe, but you'd better have your IT department prepared to deal with it, because many governments are probably going to be passing "green laws" over the next few years.

bop
bop

Those commies over there in CH are just as unwilling to sign any enviormental treathy as your non-commi gov. (I refuse to use the descriping word for the US version of non-commi). And our puppy-dog (thats how he acts when Bush is around) Anders Fogh here in DK wants them both to sign some treathy here in CPH next year. I'm working for an institut on UCPH and if someone should/would know about the CO2 levels, resoars and temperatures in the past 1000.000.000 years it's on an institut like this - and no one here wants to conclude anything. Maybe it's because all data gives an inconclusive answere. But it could be "shot-up, it's a scam" or "shot-up, it's even worse than we dear to say" or the version I beleave (hope for) myself "Use common sense and we'll be fine". What I know is that Al Gore is way out of line even polluting more than he's doing of good. And the CH gov. are stupid narrow sigted, trying to succed in becoming a industrial superpower - ignoring all or most enviormental cost. Yes I know they'r building a very big hydropower-thing but what else are they doing to reduce the enviormental impact of theire quest. A lot of high profile scientist and researchers are campaining on one side or the other. A lot more are trying to profile themself on either side. Politicians try to get votes for the next turn in office or the next step in their carrear just like our own puppy-dog here i DK. But getting back on track - why are we using 400W+ PSUs when quality 300W would work perfect - why do we accept desktop/workstations that burn of 300W+/100W+(idle) when 150W/

mboyle
mboyle

The quicker the public globally warms up to the idea they're brains are being green washed the better!

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

Most of the posts I read manage to express theselves without throwing out political governance models. Why are things so often "socialist" or "commi" when someone in the US disagrees with something? (yeah.. it's not always a US citizen but 90% of the time...) You may not agree with the extremists but can you not see any good that may come from being a little more aware of how much waste you leave behind? Heck, I'm more behind the economical benefits than the hysteria but that's still something of value to be considered. I also thought trees gave off O2 during the day when they can derive energy from photosynthisis and CO2 at night when they are without a light source so what do I know.

Timbo Zimbabwe
Timbo Zimbabwe

"I don't have time to waste on concepts that are worthless" And yet we waste our time on your post... go figure. Well, I do not feel it (Global Warming) is all man made, yet I can not help but think we are adding to the problem. Al Gore did not have it all wrong, it is that his view is not balanced. "I know my network clients feel the same way" You talk to your computers? Oh, you mean people. Get out from behind your desk, get some fresh air and hug a tree for me.

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

Energy conservation through more efficient equipment? I'll bet every one of your network clients feels differently on this one than you say you do, especially when the bills come in. "I can buy equipment that will save money on my power bill?" This is an easy decision for most businesses to make. And you don't recycle [u]anything[/u]? Not glass, cans, bottles, paper, plastic? Nothing? If not, you're contributing to higher costs. In the case of paper, glass, aluminum, and some plastics, it costs much less to produce finished products from recycled materials than from scratch. Again, an economic decision. On human-caused global warming, I agree with you: man did not "cause" global warming. But global warming is happening, dude, and humans are part of the system.

ScottyCat
ScottyCat

Deny all you like, but the fact is that the planet as a whole has entered a period of unusual weather events. You may be able to explain away one, but not all in a short space of time. Australia is the driest continent apart from Antarctica. Our average rainfall is, well average over a year. Little consolation that it now is dry for the most part and the rain comes in mighty deluges instead of spread out like it used to. Enough of that green... Are your network clients reducing commodities by being networked? My experience of large networks is no, it actually increases power, paper and resource consumption. What about the server manufacturers that do not have power management software? My server room runs at little or no capacity between 11pm and 5am - 6hrs of power guzzling. At least you can do something for the bottom line even if you don't hug trees - just lift your head from the sand and look around and be proactive.

joseph.obrien
joseph.obrien

I mostly agree with you esp. the Al Gore part. I can't even think what it would have been like if he actually beat Bush. The planet naturally warms and cools historically. In fact we had one of the worst winters in history in my city. So you might say I'm all for global warming :) I do agree we need to conserve more energy though. Most companies I worked for forget about telling their employees it's unacceptable to leave PC's and monitors on unnecessarily.

gpaquette
gpaquette

As one of the leaders in IT Green IT Asset Management solutions in the industry we see the overall issue to address lowering the costs of operations. From a "good corporate citizen" perspective the green push helps companies market themselves. With our technology (itgreen.org) we have baselined clients envirionments and they now have visibility in where they are bleeding from a power consumption perspective at the desktop and in the datacenter. We have seen companies be able to save $175 per workstation/year and more in the datacenter by putting controls in place. With a 1000 system that adds up to some big $$ savings. The main problem are companies creating wallpaper solutions so many do not trust what they see. In fact a SoCal utility comapany is so enthusiastic about our solution that they have put a rebate program in place!

NotSoChiGuy
NotSoChiGuy

....but it is becoming a part of just about every hardware sales pitch I've seen the last few months. Some sales reps for Wyse had a particularly 'green' heavy presentation extolling the values of thin clients/virtualization in helping curtail rising energy costs and CO2 output. I agree that the writing is on the wall for 'emission abatement' legislation to get passed sometime soon (sooner if Obama or Clinton win and the Dems still control Congress, I'm sure)...and that IT had better start thinking about it, if they aren't already.

tom.metzger
tom.metzger

Not sure, I've never had the fortune of being a part of an IT department swimming in green. I do know that a RED IT department or should I say, an IT department 'in the RED' is a bad thing. Bad for business and bad for your livelihood.

Timbo Zimbabwe
Timbo Zimbabwe

I think it is partially myth considering that electronics and electricity play such a large role in keeping systems up and running. Add the fact that IT is only responsible for 2% or less of CO2 emissions. However, I also think it is a trend as there are still ways to help conserve energy regardless of the equipment used. This, in my opinion, will be accomplished more by educating the end user and configuring systems to use less power, such as setting monitors to go into stand-by instead of screensaver mode, getting users to power down unused equipment over weekends, etc.

Craig_B
Craig_B

I believe that Green IT is a useful practice. On a pure business sense it saves money. On a society sense it helps conserve resources. On a planetary sense it is the right thing to do.

virgil.huston
virgil.huston

I forgot to mention that the past three years were NOT record years for heat. Be careful what you claim because you discredit the rest of your article when you make false statements.

virgil.huston
virgil.huston

One of the very unfortunate things about the global warming scam is that it tends to lump all environmental issues into one category. Being environmentally sound is good and necessary. Global warming has no good empirical evidence behind it, it is a political position and issue. In the mid 1970s the big hype was the coming ice age.

andy
andy

I work for a small Open Source Practice in Manchester, UK. Green IT has been high up on our priorities since we started up just over two years ago. One of the things we focus on is minimizing electronic waste by elongating the life of second-hand PCs for Social Projects. Decisions between re-use/re-cycle may seem small - but re-using a PC is far more eco-friendly than re-cycling one.

Rawbit
Rawbit

....how people will focus on a small portion of a post AS IF it were an intrinsic link to an argument and just leave it at that AS IF everything else is refuted by the correction. Whether night or day exhalation of plants is nothing but to show that claims have implications. The CO2 and global warming is a modern fairytale with a huge political agenda of control behind it. If people don't believe it now, they will not too long in the future. I would like to see statistic of a comparison of one jogger's CO2 emissions compared to that of the equivalent for IT hardware to give that much off. Maybe the gov't can regulate how much hardware can be purchased based upon how many people died in the hospice that month. Logic has everything to do with IT as far as I am concerned, and these stupid CO2 concerns have logic implications.

paulob
paulob

There is a brief period around sundown when trees do give off CO2 but this is more than offset than the O2 they release during the sunny part of the day.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

more wisely than your friends. You do realise you left your back being watched by someone who asserts trees breathe in during the day and breathe out at night? Another sterling example of the science of global warming?

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

about those nasty humans. Got to do something with all that hot air. I'm going to have to lighten up on the UK schooling system, it would seem it's not that bad after all. Do you think we can take it everything else he said was complete bollocks as well?

rickclark9
rickclark9

Check your credentials. NUMEROUS scientists are now saying that due to decreases from the 11 year high in solar activity, that it is most likely we are entering into a new ice age. Global warming was caused by...drum roll...solar activity!! Wow! Most of us knew this would happen, just like Bran Muffins are good for you and coffee is bad for you and now bran muffins aren't anything and coffee is good for you. Relax. Green thinking is okay as is moving toward more efficient machinery. Green radicals are just radicals. They are the same "sky is falling" people who wanted ethanol cars and electric cars and now wonder why food prices are so high and never cared that drive parts for their Prius had to be made in a nuclear facility. Chill. The earth is.

verd
verd

I agree with you joe

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

According to ScienceDaily, the top 11 warmest years on record have all occurred within the last 13 years. I called the last three "record" years for heat because all of three are in the top 10 all time, and all three featured record heat waves in different parts of the world. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071213101419.htm I am not claiming that global warming is real or not. I'm just trying to share the data that governments and politicians are looking at, because they are potentially going to use this data to pass new legislation to regulate many of these Green IT issues.

Ed H.
Ed H.

Totally confident in being clueless.

dawuf
dawuf

Even if you don't believe in Global Warming. You have to admit with rising cost of energy that green practices should in the long reduce that cost. Besides do you really want breath dirty air. One of the main ways IT can go green is send its non-essential staff home to work. In most markets the biggest contributors to Green House gases is car exhaust and the exhaust of large commerical building venting CO2 out its environmental controls. By reducing teh bodies in a commercial property, a company does not have to lease as much space or use as much energy.

JMTP
JMTP

With the exception of a very few, the vast majority of the world's scientists concur that global warming is real, that it is happening now and that it will affect the planet in ways that will dramtically impact virtually every species, not to mention you and me, our children and grandchildren. To call it "political" is simply ignorance.

rnwatt
rnwatt

I totally agree. The global warming alarmists will be the ones with egg on their faces - but energy conservation and continuing the drive for efficient and cheap energy (as distinct from green for its own sake energy)is critical.

copperti
copperti

I believe that the green I.T "movement" is a good idea wether the emissions affect 2% or 50%. The only thing that slightly bothers me is that for alot of products, when you decide to purchase "green," it seems that you have to sacrifice some performance in the product by doing so. Most of the customers I deal with on a daily basis, namely universities and some government entities have made it plain that they prefer NOT to go green based off of the thought of sacrificing some performance in their servers and such. Again, this may not be true for every product, but I know it is for some and I thought it would be good to mention that it is one of the reasons why a lot of people don't buy green (I don't either...yet). --Copperti

rdevon12
rdevon12

1. It would be nice if the IT industry generated the equivalent of a LEED Certification process for the way information is generated and transmitted. Andy just indicated the importance of product life cycles, for example 2. When information travels people do not. Ground transportation is crippling most countries by relying on an exhaustible, polluting, and expensive energy source that generates wars. It should be largely converted to electricity that is not oil based. But most importantly, IT should be used to reduce travel both by telecommuting and by starting businesses in communities rather than establishing commuting communities all too far from business.

Rawbit
Rawbit

...is a huge part of surviving in IT. "The bit where your accused green types of being stupid commies who might propose to chop down trees...." I would say rather puerile reading comprehension. I said that the movement was a socialist and communist push. I didn't say anyone was stupid who happen to go along with the scam. I didn't even say they would propose chopping down trees...I was talking about logical implications that laws could easily ensue determining WHEN they could be cut down based on the initial false principles. Simply, lies breed more lies and confusion. I can't really blame people for falling for the Global Warming since there are many respectable people believing it. But that doesn't change the truth of what I have said. If we can monitor petty CO2 emissions from computers, why not forbid strenuous exercise or sports that produces far more,? Etc, etc. Why not start looking at "useless breathers"? etc. It is a scam used for leverage and political control. The false premise for more constricting laws. A clear case of penny wise and pound foolish in dealing with emissions.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

to the population problem, I would like to show my great grandchildren a real one. We should have a hug a tree day annually, just to make sure they all haven't been minced up to make crap throwaway furniture before they arrive.

jdclyde
jdclyde

out of a treehugging commie loon..... ;\

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

The bit where your accused green types of being stupid commies who might propose to chop down trees.... Given your assumptions are invalid, your logic puerile, your arguments are at best adolescent, you now fall back on ignore the 'reasoning', agree with me because I'm right? Have you considered a career in politics? Given I tend to a position erring on the side of caution, in the climate change debate, by all means keep up your high quality contributions to this topic. When someone accuses me of being a treehugging commie loon, I'll be able to link to them.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

Based on my limited scientific background; "How stupid is that! This is another stupid socialist (and communist) ploy to increase governmental controls and take away freedoms." This is a tired old knee jerk reaction; "some kind of change is being discussed and it may involve the government and I don't agree with it - it's a commi plot to take my freedoms!" (Ironically, while blindly applauding the increasing limitations of freedom through fear marketing ;) ) "Why don't we just ground planes and cruise ships from pleasure travel? That is equivalent to probably years of CO2 emissions." The technical term us nautical types would use is "put cruise ships into dry dock" rather than "grounding" them as that would indicate running aground like the oil tanker skeletons in India. Granted, flight is considered a high contributor to co2 levels and cruise ships are not regularly used for transit so the "for pleasure only" angle may have some basis. It's still a bit of a blind reaction to simply say; "gosh, why don't we just stop using everything if your talking about maybe limiting the use of something" "Does anyone know what the equivalent of one jet flight has compared to IT departments?" I'm going to guess that the fuel burnt during a flight can potentially cause more co2 than the power usage of an IT department. This, of course, depends on the size of the server farm and client side of the network along with how the power was originally generated. "Trees give of CO2 in the day and oxygen at night; will they now make laws to only cut down trees in the morning?" More blind reaction with over the top examples. I'm still pretty sure he's got the process reversed also but we'd need someone who slept through less Biology in high school to confirm. If I remember correctly, you don't put too many plants in an ill person's hospital room because there is the potential (and I mean a lot of plants) for those plants to use all the co2 during the night though they would be producing "fresh air" during the day. "After all the C02 brainwashing, maybe we will forbid jogging and other strenuous exercise where we exhale increased levels of CO2. Maybe this will give a nice push to euthanasia too. Stupid, stupid, stupid. Let's get off the wagon; the band sounds horrible." Aaaaand, now he's gone right off; completely over the top exaggerations that make any valid points very hard to see. I do agree with premoting though rather than blindly following along but the way in which that idea is expressed is not as helpful. Hopefully he felt better after that brief but inaccurate rant though. :)

dawuf
dawuf

And you don't think rising food prices have anything to do with the rising cost of fuel which is a supply issue and has little to do with ethanol added to fuel? It is in the U.S. for sure. In other parts of the world, drought and poor growing season combined with hoarding of grains that can be used to produce ethanol to add to Gas have contributed food riots. Also, Global Warming can lead to an ice age. As more fresh water enters the Ocean from melting ice caps it can shut down the conveyor belts that warm and cool the oceans. The results are in areas that are typcially warmed by these currents (the Gulf Stream is one of them) you would then see a refreeze. The cold conveyors ,such as the Humbolt which cools the coastal areas of California for example, will cause the coasts to dry out thus causing drought in those areas and those areas justget hotter.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

Stop being part of the problem, you knew nothing of the kind. You are as bad the Gores and the Cheneys. Pluck out one bit of evidence, hold it up and say aha, I was right all along. Pathetic. Human caused climate change is possible, probable who knows. No one has made a scientific study to find out, all they've done is 'prove' what they already believed. Scientists can talk out of their arses as much as anyone else. In fact based on current evidence, most of them do handstands to take a sh1t. Try not to join them it's unsanitary and embarassing.

mboyle
mboyle

Chill. The earth is. I also believe that was the motto of the 60's?

mudpuppy1
mudpuppy1

I think you just proved jbrahm@...'s point. You reference back to the UN. Now there's a reliable source (LMAO). That bunch of socialists is in bed with that lunatic Al Gore. It's fine to reduce your energy use and to do things that don't result in destruction, but that guy is way off the deep end, driven by emotion.

guillenkma
guillenkma

Jason, I read thte article you linked to. It speaks of warmest and coldest years on record. If you look at the data that was presented, you can see that it was "chosen" to get the desired effect from the reader. There are several years that have been ommitted. That makes it conceivable that the provider of the information is "skewing" the information to their own ends. Likely to get another year of grant money for identifying the effects warm climate on the geopolitcial environment and to support thier way of thinking. I say presnt all data and let the masses decide, don't cut and paste data to slant our point of view toward your own. Global 10 Warmest Years Mean Global temperature (?C) (anomaly with respect to 1961-1990) 1998 0.52 2005 0.48 2003 0.46 2002 0.46 2004 0.43 2006 0.42 2007(Jan-Nov) 0.41 2001 0.40 1997 0.36 1995 0.28 UK 10 Warmest Years Mean UK Temperature (?C) (anomaly with respect to 1971-2000) 2006 +1.15 2007 (Jan to 10th Dec) + 1.10 2003 + 0.92 2004 + 0.89 2002 + 0.89 2005 + 0.87 1990 + 0.83 1997 + 0.82 1949 + 0.80 1999 + 0.78

Proud member of Vast right wing majority
Proud member of Vast right wing majority

I am committed to going "Green". Not because of the ALGORE hype, but for real concerns over our environment. CFL's and florescent tubes and computers are a perfect example. All of these contain substances that should be captured and recycled. Our energy independence could be attained through the construction of carefully regulated nuclear power plants (albeit with extreme govt regulation), and exploration of oil in the recenly discovered fields in Eastern Montana, North Dakota and the Anwar province.

si
si

So what? By your argument, no-one can publish anything and remain credible. Thank you Jason for sticking to your point - whether climate change is coming or not, legislative change is inevitable.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

They just reported it. The data comes from the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), which is an agency of the United Nations located in Switzerland. http://www.wmo.ch/

jbrahm
jbrahm

Created by Canadian-American science writer/editor Dan Hogan and his wife Michele Hogan in December 1995, ScienceDaily Michele has served as a judge for annual educational software competitions at the national level sponsored by the Educational Press Association of America (EdPress). She has also judged several national middle school essay contests -- organized by the Weekly Reader Corporation's sister company, Lifetime Learning Systems. In 1998, she judged an essay contest in conjunction with HBO's award-winning "From the Earth to the Moon" television mini-series, directed by Tom Hanks. In 1999, she judged an essay contest in conjunction with the U.S. Internal Revenue Service on the question: To add to this positive outcome, Hogan is making money. "All revenue for ScienceDaily comes from online advertising, with AdSense generating 66 percent of total revenue." In addition, the effectiveness of Hogan's cost-per-click ads on AdSense is four to five times that of the other ad networks. To reference this magazine and its editors as publishers of scientific fact only makes them more money, it does not however make the planet any warmer.

Centered
Centered

The entire population of the world (~6.6 billion)could live in Oregon, the 10th largest state in the United States, and the population density still wouldn't match that of Mumbai, India. The problem isn't too many people. To think otherwise is to claim an importance and power for our species far beyond what we merit.

si
si

See if you can follow my wonderful (flawed) logic. 1. A potential problem is spotted and it causes a sense of uneasyness in most people. 2. An entreprenuer (or government) comes along with a solution. 3. This person is actually a scam artist and their solution is useless. 4. From this we can infer that the problem does not actually exist. 5. QED. This is a line often used by AGW skeptics adn has been used here already. So... Let's take the example of parachute salesmen post 9/11. Problem: Tall buildings are hard to get out of quickly. Solution: Jump with a parachute. How many scam artists came out of the woodwoork selling hankerchiefs on string as viable parachutes? Does this mean that using a 'real' parachute to escape is not viable? No. But more importantly, following my previous logic, does this mean that buildings are actually a good deal easier to get out of? Afterall, if people are trying to scam others then there must not actually be a problem at all. Personally, I do not see what is wrong with improving energy efficiency and looking for alternative sources. Though this does not really address the problem that there are just too many people... Now there is a 'real' political problem.

blarman
blarman

"to call it political is pure ignorance." The global environment is such a mix of interrelated and complex interactions that every scientist agrees there is no comprehensive model to cover everything. The alarmist studies published by Al Gore and the UN are based on predictive models that at best only account for 50% of the factors involved. For more hard details on global warming, check out Michael Crichton's "State of Fear". I would also point out that science only has hard data for about the past 100 years. The earth is millions and billions of years old, meaning that the data that has been collected doesn't amount to a speck of ink on a canvas meters high and meters wide.

mboyle
mboyle

Interesting that you have first hand knowledge of what every scientist on the planet thinks about global warming. Maybe the few you are thinking of have read Nasa's latest observations. spaceandscience.net | Jan 13, 2008 Today, the Space and Science Research Center, (SSRC) in Orlando, Florida announces that it has confirmed the recent web announcement of NASA solar physicists that there are substantial changes occurring in the sun?s surface. The SSRC has further researched these changes and has concluded they will bring about the next climate change to one of a long lasting cold era.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

We may be puny little ants but enough of us swarming this small rock and it will show the effects. Us arrogant apes swarming this plannet have already cause very real envornmenal effects. I don't have the scientific eduction or reading to claim one side of the "is it really happening" debate over the other. I would suggest that it is worth finding what makes it acceptable for one indavidually though. First, if they are right the eventual outcome does not help anyone on this rock and "I'll be dead by then so it doesn't matter" does not make me feel justified in my own laziness. The "polititions" will go with whichever way the popular vote goes. The "hippies" will go with the social reasons and anti-political reasons. The "joiners" will go along with what the real hippies say. (we've all seen the joiners gravitating to the real "activists", they're usually the louder but less knowledable ones being interviewed at demonstrations. Penn and Teller's BS episode on environmental hysteria has a few great "joiner" example ;) ) The "businesses" will go along with what results in less expense for greater profit. The "indavidual" may or may not believe the warming hysteria but lower bills at home and less impact on your local environment can't be a bad thing can it? I'd say with the potential downside it's not a gamble worth guessing wrong on (within reason rather than too that "activist" level). With the limited impact to one's lifestyle, financial benefits and potential upside; it's worth considering more responsible practices. Mind you, the one that boggles me is still recycling paper: - fully renewable - most paper comes from tree farming, not natural growth forests - recycling costs more financially than tree farming responsibly - recycling releases more polutants than tree farming resopnsibly Things may have change since these points are a few years old now though. Anyone know if the cost too recycle paper has been significantly reduced?

paulg8753@yahoo.com
paulg8753@yahoo.com

Virgil is correct, the concept of man caused Global Warming Is a Scam! While tempatures were warming until about 10 yrs ago, reptuable scientists, who are not part of those enviromental whacko groups who get all their funding, from claiming man caused warming, have actually looked at all factors. The sun has been putting out more energy, causing warming here and on other planets in our solar system. Also tempature changes have been nearly flat for the last 5 yrs. Now the other day, I heard that these same alarmist "scientists" are back to saying there is global COOLING starting up! Meanwhile CO2 levels continue to increase. Carbon Dioxide is not Pollutant! Since we all exhale CO2, what do they propose next? Killing people? AL Gore is getting rich pushing his now nearly, totaly discredited movie "An Inconvenient Truth"! He used bogus data, and old out of date info that was packaged to alarm people. Al is getting rich selling those bogus made up "Carbon Credits"! Man is a puny creature who is incapable of causing the kinds of catastrophe these screwballs claim, just by living a normal life. God has far more power over the natural climate change cycles, that have been going on for the life of this planet. So 30 yrs ago, they said New Ice Age...then Global Warming....now we are back to Global Cooling again? This shows these people have no clue what they are talking about, and yes.. It IS A POLITICAL movement being advanced by a bunch of socialists, who want to tax us to death and control all of us with these screwball ideas.

steve.lewinsky
steve.lewinsky

6 Months ago one of those "Safe Green CFL" bulbs almost burnt my house down. The manufacturer quickly had me send them the bulb for "Analysis". Thier report came back stating exactly "This is NORMAL end of life"... They would only address the visual issues with the bulb. They refused to address the fact that I was there and it Shot a 4" flame and broke the glass bezel. They included several government link to say light browning is normal.etc. The manufacturer was "GLOBE ELECTRIC" in Montreal. So I replied back to them...So this is "Normal END OF LIFE"? ...WHO's? I never recieved a reply back. So I guess saving the earth is at the cost of YOU dieing.

paulob
paulob

I measured some power usage of workstation computers at work(drafting and accounting), I wasn't allowed to unplug the servers for some reason. The newer the PC the less power used. Even quad core PCs with two LCD screens only used 40Watts/hour averaged over 1 week(no power saver activated). The fluro tubes used more power. The older (3-5 years)PCs used slightly more, 45-50Watts.

tjohnston
tjohnston

I'm not sure I buy into your theory of lowering the energy usage per household as a way to fit more houses in on the same amount of power plants, but that's an interesting theory. I think the majority of the "Green" freaks push saving electricity because some areas are supplied by electric generation that they don't like, like Nuclear or Fossil Fuel power plants. Another point they would make is lower electrical requirements opens up the ability to run from "non-traditional" power sources like Solar and Wind. Your percenage of solar power is not going to be large while powering a whole house of energy sucking appliances, but if you lower that amount of energy that you need, a higher percentage of your power consumption would come from your solar panels, again reducing demand from the grid. There are folks in several areas of the country that get their power from sources on site. I saw one "community" in NC that had about 10 homes built with "green" construction that got "all the power they needed" from on-site solar, wind, and water power from a local stream. These were also the kind of people that didn't run the AC, ate lots of fresh foods and didn't have normal appliances. They made most of their clothes and grew most of their food. The lifestyle is far from "main stream" but it does take them off the grid... Again, I'm not a huge fan of the global warming theory, but saving myself money is a good thing, even if it appears to be "jumping on the green bandwagon".

steve.lewinsky
steve.lewinsky

The ONLY benefit to cutting down electrical usage is "In your OWN pocket". If "I" save energy, then that amount I just saved is going to power that new house that is being erected down the street. So in NO WAY have we reduced the emmissions for power production. Could this "SAVE ELECTRICITY" just be a way to fit MORE homes, & buildings onto the Electricity grid without having to spend money to build more power plants? Each connection to the grid gives more money to the government.

tjohnston
tjohnston

I've yet to buy into the man-caused global warming theory. The science used is fuzzy at best. But there are things that are considered "green" that are still good. If a Compact Flourescent bulb saves electricty and "pays for itself" in 3 years, thats probably a good thing (not considering that CFL's contain mercury and are a hazardous waste area if you break one). If I can put in a programmable thermostat that will keep my house comfortable while I'm there (and awake) and save me money on my monthly bill then its a good thing, even if I don't care about global warming. With Gas prices going up, Hybrids or electric cars make more and more sense. I found or made a calculator to see how high the price of gas would have to get before the additional cost of the hybrid engine would break even. At the time I did it, gas was just over $2, and hybrids were about $5000 more than the traditional models. Then I want to say my break even point was like 5 years. With gas pushing $4, and with hybrids becoming more and more afforadable, that break even point can get short enough to justify the expense just by the dollars, not by the CO2 footprint.

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