40% is the Magic Number for HP's Eco-Efforts

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Photo by donjd2 via Flickr CC

Hewlett Packard has announced a new goal for lowering carbon emissions. Since 2005, HP has improved its desktop PC energy efficiency by 40%. They want to see another 40% efficiency improvement in about half that time, by 2011. That goal represents 1 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity savings, or enough to power a town of 90,000 people for a year, according to HP's Steve Hoffman. And the company has a few important steps lined up to help them accomplish the goal. HP didn't score terribly well on Greenpeace's latest report on how effective the IT industry is in acting on carbon footprint goals. Their latest move could help move them up the ladder just a bit.

The company plans on working harder on four key areas to reduce PC energy consumption: designing energy-efficient hardware, improving green data center practices, working to change consumer behavior towards more efficient habits, and helping business customers improve the efficiency of HP products.

HP has sent around information about a few new developments up its sleeve. As Greener Computing sums up, the initiatives include HP's EcoHighlights label expanding to include 150 products (though we take these labels with a grain of salt); an update to its Web Jetadmin printing-fleet management software that will provide environmental reporting capabilities so that IT managers can see what equipment has greener features like duplex printing and when those features are being used; and new telecom technology called SkyRoom that allows workers to access high quality virtual conferencing with others, without leaving their workstations.

HP also touts their recycling efforts, stating: [B]y 2011, HP expects to use a total of 100 million pounds of recycled plastic in its printing products (cumulative from 2007). To provide perspective, this is the equivalent of diverting 4 billion plastic water bottles from going to landfill.

This is excellent, but we have to keep it in perspective; we wonder what percentage of HP's total manufactured products this represents. With non-existant recycling reporting standards for electronics manufacturers, it's tough to know when numbers just seem big, and when they are big.

It sounds like HP is moving forward in the right direction - indeed, we've admired their initiatives for IT eco-standards in the past - and we're hoping pressure from groups like Greenpeace who are holding them to their word will go far in ensuring that they not only meet these great goals, but set even more stringent goals in the near future.

More on HP
Greenpeace's Latest Green Gadget Guide Knocks Down HP, Lenovo, Dell
HP Steps Up IT Industry Transparency, Releases Supply Chain Emissions Data
Greener By Design 2009: HP and a Computer Box Meant to Last Forever
HP Bags Wal-Mart's Reduced Packaging Award With Laptop In A Bag
Sonata Battery Now Available in HP Notebooks

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