Green sustainable IT is a sop to middle class consciences

At the national itSMF conferences of both New Zealand and Australia this year, I had the pleasure of being on a panel with Tristan Boot, Alison Rowe and Karen Ferris called What Happens When the Greenie, Guru & IT Skeptic Meet? to discuss green sustainable IT. Guess which one I was.

Green IT isn't about saving the planet

According to figures from the ACM a 10% reduction in both server power and cooling in all datacentres in the USA would amount to a 0.04% change in total US energy consumption. Wow! So reduce power to save money, or to make yourself feel better, but don't tell me it's about reducing footprint. Especially not if you drive a SUV, live in air-conditioned and/or heated comfort, eat meat, fly, or use anything plastic or electronic. Green IT is marketing, pure and simple. Cynical branding such as KyotoCooling just makes me ill. It is in the same league as people who think they do their bit for a better world for their children by sorting the recyclables in their garbage. Or who bang on about reducing paper usage at work while they wear cotton clothing.

Green IT: dolphin-free computing

Puhleeese. Green IT is pure fad. Sitting in an air-con office made from cement and steel and plastics, with the SUV parked outside, banging on about saving a kilowatt is just PC hypocracy.

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