Good for the Earth; Good for Business
Today is Earth Day. Students across the world will discuss going green, start recycling initiatives on their campuses and may even have designated time for projects — from making planters out of recycled tin cans to creating papier-mâché globes as a way of appreciating our home planet. In the workplace we might use provided recycling bins, bring reusable lunch containers, carpool or bike to work, and try to find ways to be environmentally responsible. These all contribute to awareness as well as the overall health of our planet, but what about Earth Day from a business standpoint?
From news reports of droughts to documentaries about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, the human race is becoming increasingly more aware of our impact on the planet. Companies are increasingly going green not only to be on the positive side of that conversation, but also because environmentally sound business practices is, simply put, good business. This is especially true in the technology sector.
“Traditionally, the largest portion of a company’s overhead is headcount, but large hosting companies are finding that infrastructure costs — in particular power and cooling — are rapidly eclipsing all other aspects of the budget,” according to Brian Schoepfle, manager for inside sales for service providers at Insight. Technology has to be plugged in or powered up and this makes efficient energy practices a continued concern. For service providers in particular, how to conserve and best use that power play directly into the budget.
From the computers used in cubicles to the light bulbs overhead, companies are spending money and energy to keep business moving forward. Even after a company’s employees go home, they are consuming energy by way of standby power: the power devices use simply being plugged in — even when they are set to “power-saving” mode and even when they are turned off completely. In fact, “10% of residential electric use” is from standby power alone.
“Not only do many states offer tax incentives for efficient datacenters, more and more customers are asking that the companies they choose to do business with be socially and environmentally responsible,” said Schoepfle. Companies want to be environmentally responsible and customers want to work with businesses that offer green initiatives. “Every business can make simple changes that save energy costs and natural resources,” according to the “Green Business Guide” from the U.S. Small Business Administration.
Whether you are a business trying to run smarter, or just a resident of Earth trying to leave a smaller carbon footprint, taking care of the planet is important to every living thing. Because as NASA put it yesterday, there is #NoPlaceLikeHome.