What is meant by Green IT?

  • By Information and Communications Technology (ICT) we mean, the Equipment, systems, services, technologies and methods (voice, data, visual, digital) used for communicating, processing, managing, using, storing and destroying information.
  • By Green ICT we mean, the tools, techniques and approaches that reduce the material impact of ICT on the environment across its lifecycle, ranging from the resources and materials used in the manufacture/development of ICT, the conditions under which ICT is manufactured or developed, the delivery of ICT to customers and users, the energy consumed in using ICT, and, the disposal of ICT at the end of its life
  • Ref: HMG GDU (Green Delivery Unit)
  • However, ICT not only has the capacity to reduce its own energy use and carbon emissions but also across the entire supply chain in virtually all other commercial, public and educational activities.

But, and it is a BIG but, is it actually possible to be “Green” when using ICT?

As users, we cannot “buy” registered ICT equipment in the same way that you can buy “fairtrade” products, i.e. products that have been verified (by independent sources) as being sourced using recycled materials, produced using renewable energy and potentially disposed of in a responsible manner.

As users we have no control over the data centres, fixed and mobile communications and all the other associated equipment needed to provide those digital services.

In essence, we have to rely on the businesses that create and sell the devices to operate “sustainably” on our behalf, we have to rely on the businesses that create, maintain and operate communications networks to think “sustainably” on our behalf, we have to “hope” that all the businesses in the supply chain are operating in a sustainable and energy efficient fashion, we simply have to take them at face value.

Many of them do, providing “Environmental Responsibility” reports, others do not.

The question is, as users of ICT systems, should we be thinking “sustainability” in everything we do or should we just leave it to others on our behalf.

Here, at SFL we feel that users should take a proactive role in ensuring the all ICT systems, from devices, on the network and finally to our data centres and this is why we’ve created this site.

We want to provide businesses, government, academia and everybody in the capital to be able to “green” their ICT systems by using independent sources of information, using our independent advocacy services, attending our training and events and finally joining with us as stakeholders in research projects.

Please take some time to review our site and let us know how we can help you to make London’s ICT as “green” as it can be.