Shrinking Your Digital Footprint

Posted on Feb 20, 2013 in Green Tip

It’s no surprise that technology has become a pretty big part of our lives. On one hand, using technology has its advantages when it comes to going green, but the need for storing information on electronic devices uses more energy than you might think. Here are some ways you can cut back on energy and shrink your digital footprint:

In the workplace, you should try to use a shared data center like the “Cloud.” This is especially good for smaller offices to save memory space and make more use of renewable sources of energy. Organizations with less than 100 users could shrink their IT carbon emissions by a huge 90% just by switching to the cloud!!

For the really tech savvy people out there, this one’s for you. Try using green apps to monitor how much energy you’re using. Researchers claim when you know how much energy you’re using you’re more likely to use less. On your smart phone, check out the apps ‘Carbon Calc’ and ‘Meter Reading’.

Now, I don’t know about you but I don’t shut down my computer as often as I should. Research shows that making sure your computer shuts down completely when not being used is the single biggest energy saving opportunity for most computers.

Lastly, when you decide to upgrade electronic equipment – whether it’s a cell phone, computer, tablet, and so on – donate your used equipment or recycle it responsibly with a certified e-waste recycler. This will keep harmful materials out of our landfills. Check out the EPA’s website for a list of places to donate used electronics.

– Contributed by Brooke Lehenbauer, Public Awareness Coordinator for Keep Cincinnati Beautiful