Wednesday 2nd January 2019
by Aidan McEvoy

Aidan McEvoy

How to reduce your IT-related carbon emissions

“The science is clear: for all the ambitious climate action we’ve seen, governments need to move faster and with greater urgency. We’re feeding this fire, while the means to extinguish it are within reach.” Joyce Msuya, deputy executive director of UN Environment.

The Irish Government has admitted that we will not reach our carbon emission reduction targets for 2020. But Ireland has started the plan towards reducing it now and to significantly reduce it in subsequent decades. In a big step recently, the Irish government provided €77 million to 7 initiatives – which are ultimately likely to use around €300m of the €500m put aside in May 2018.

So how can you reduce global warming carbon emissions?

Conserving energy helps reduce our carbon footprint. And transportation emits more than half of nitrogen oxides in our air and is a major source of global warming emissions.

Our own changing requirements for more flexible working locations such as remote working also enable us to positively effect climate change. A recent Silicon Republic article stated that remote working will rival fixed office locations by 2025.

Unnecessary travel during extreme weather is discouraged for our own safety. But what if regularly travelling to work could be avoided too? How can you do your part for the environment and at the same time keep employees happy?


Enable your employees to work remotely

Moving to the cloud is the first significant step to enabling your employees to work remotely. The first and simplest item on the agenda is to convert to Office 365. This means that your employees can have access to the same documentation they have at work – Word, Excel, PowerPoint and of course Outlook.

Other systems that your employees are likely to use frequently and so you should consider moving to the cloud are

  • CRM
  • Business Intelligence (BI)
  • HR
  • Payroll
  • Public facing data applications and websites

How can you conserve energy?

Irish Research carried out by Zinopy in conjunction with Citrix in September 2017 indicated that 69.5% of organisations surveyed still use PCs.

However, a thin client (a computer with no hard drive – aka desktop terminal) consumes as little as 15 watts per hour compared to a typical PC which consumes between 80-250 watts per hour? That’s a 600%-1700% difference in energy consumption. A thin client has been optimised for working via remote connection with a server environment so all software and applications needed for your employees to do their job effectively is stored on the server. (FYI, a fat client is a PC.)

Using remote working, thin clients and virtualisation tools, you can help make an impact on climate change and reduce your carbon emissions.


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