Partial to going green

Updated: Jan 27 2008, 04:43am hrs
Business strategies are increasingly taking on a green hue. Companies are realising it pays to have a positive impact on the environment. Profits go up. And when it comes to technology companies, quite a few of them are using information technology to lower energy use and waste.

Western Digital has been one of these and has designed eco-friendly hard drives to bring more energy efficient options to its customers and thereby reduce their consumption of electricity. These GreenPower hard drives yield average drive power savings of 4-5 watts over competitors drives while maintaining solid performance. That power saving equates to reducing CO2 emission by up to 60 kilogram per drive per year the equivalent of taking your car off the road for 14 days each year. This new platform makes it possible for our energy-conscious customers to build systems with higher capacities and the right balance of system performance, ensured reliability and energy conservation, explains Sharad Srivastava, director, sales (India and South Asia), Western Digital.

The power crisis in the country is reflected in the MAIT-Emerson Network Power (India) study on Network Power Downtime, which reveals that India Inc could be losing over Rs 22,000 crore in direct losses, due to poor power quality and operating environment-related downtime estimated to be around 2.2% of the gross output of the total industrial and service sectors. With energy costs skyrocketing and the threat of global warming, organisations are being forced to take a look at their ecological impact. And companies and their clients are both realising the benefits of utilising products that can reduce their energy consumption.

We estimate our new GreenPower platform can save large data-hungry organisations like financial institutions and search engine services, up to $10 per drive per year in electricity costs. This amount doesnt sound like much until you consider, for example, a large data centre with say 10,000 drives. That adds up to $100,000 in saving per year! points out Srivastava.

Recognising that data centres can be one of the biggest energy guzzlers, IBMs Project Green initiative has set itself the target of accelerating green technologies to address the IT energy woes of its clients, investing $1 billion each year under this initiative. It is also looking at saving more than 5 billion KW of energy and reducing the energy costs of its own data centres in the next three years. Energy used to power and cool todays data centres represents 44% of a data centres total cost of ownership and for a company of any size today, this can be a huge saving, besides it being a great contribution towards protecting the environment, says Steven Sams, vice-president, site and facilities services, IBM. Since one data centre uses energy consumed by 2000 homes, adopting such technologies can cut a typical data centre cost by half. In addition, they can protect the environment by reducing emissions that amount to taking 1300 automobiles off the road, says Sams.

Philips India has preferred to concentrate on children to spread awareness about the need for energy management. Based on the Catch them young principle, their Art of Simplicity programme is meant to imbibe strong values related to energy conservation in school children. Through this, children can take the message of energy conservation back to their homes. The school contact programme will witness lighting experts interacting with students at different levels to educate them about the importance of energy management. The programme also includes specially designed competitions for students to make them understand energy management and energy efficient lighting and its importance in todays environment, explains Mathew Job, marketing director, lighting division, Philips Electronics India.

Altogether, 580 schools across nine cities Mumbai, Delhi , Jaipur, Kolkata, Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad, Pune and Coimbatore are being contacted through this programme. Philips is also offering a scholarship of Rs 1 lakh each to three students who come up with new ideas on energy conservation.

Says Hussain Sakriwala, a student of Class VIII, Lady Engineer High School, Mumbai, who attended the programme recently, It was a very interesting session. We have become more aware of energy conservation techniques and are attempting to inculcate this in our day-to-day life.

Echoes his principal Errick Elavia, Our children enjoyed the programme and are now more aware of energy conservation techniques. We hope this can be followed up by more awareness from the parents side so that energy conservation can become a way of life for children.

Whether it is todays corporate customer or tomorrows (read children), energy conservation seems to have found its target audience, making both eager recipients of energy-saving tips!