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IT a culprit, savior in climate change
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Written by Daniel   
Saturday, 13 October 2007 10:41
 Climate change is both a crisis and an opportunity for IT: As its power consumption increases, creating a large market for efficient technology and solutions

By Stephen Lawson, IDG News Service, InfoWorld
October 12, 2007
Climate change is both a large-scale crisis and a huge opportunity, and IT has a role in both, industry executives said at a panel discussion Thursday.In hopes of fending off environmental disaster from rising temperatures and ocean levels, technologists need to come up with more efficient technologies and renewable energy sources, panelists said at the annual TechNet Innovation Summit at UC Berkeley. Innovation in this area is "the biggest economic opportunity in our lifetime," said John Doerr, a longtime venture capitalist and a partner in the Silicon Valley firm of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.



The benefits have already started flowing to Sun, according to Jonathan Schwartz, the company's president and CEO. Sun bet five years ago that power would become the dominant issue in the server business, and its first system that was slower but designed for power efficiency shipped about 18 months ago, he said. Those types of servers have become a billion-dollar business, the fastest-growing at Sun, Schwartz said.

He called on the IT industry to adopt a standard, like the Energy Star label for household appliances, to show the efficiency of hardware. "Just forcing everybody to become more transparent will drive a lot of change," he said. The industry will play a critical role because of the power consumption it creates, according to Schwartz. Between 3 and 4 percent of all electricity consumed worldwide goes to running datacenters, he said, and that is likely to grow as emerging nations such as China and India become more connected with the Internet and the rest of the world... More

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