Adopting a Greener Corporate Outlook
Having an environmental policy provides a framework for action, for setting objectives and targets, and sends a clear signal from management to stakeholders and employees. The inclusion of a network management system enhanced with green networking measures, can help to evaluate, report and improve an organisation's environmental performance.
An operational approach to green network management typically includes the following areas:
- Power management for unused computers
- using more energy-efficient computers first
- trying to optimise load distribution between servers
- optimising or replacing sub-optimal computers and software
- eliminating underutilised network devices
- reacting to abnormal energy consumptions.
Zero carbon - renewable energy
Purchasing “green electricity” – or more general power from renewable energy resources – is seen by many companies and institutions as a good way to decrease the environmental impacts of its activities. In practice, however, determining which types of green power actually have a real beneficial effect on global climate change is a very complex issue, including both environmental and political aspects.
Partners in the GÉANT Green team, and other NRENs and organisations, are researching methods of dynamically allocating network resources to maximise the use of renewable energy. Based on the work conducted within the GÉANT Green team, several successful test cases are deployed and useful conclusions regarding the difficulties faced on the deployment as well as the operational face are extracted.
Best Practice Initiatives
The partners in Green GÉANT have introduced and completed initiatives aimed at reducing environmental impacts in general and emission of GHG in particular in their networking and computational infrastructure. These initiatives that are related with the operators’ perspective on increasing energy efficiency are related with the following areas:
- Videoconferencing - seen by many stakeholders as an important way of reducing environmental impacts and climate change. With high-quality equipment, videoconferencing can substitute face-to-face meetings that otherwise would require short or long transportation, often by demanding means such as airplanes.
- Virtualization - becoming more and more interesting also from an environmental point of view, on both the national, regional and global level.
- Energy-aware traffic engineering - related with the application of network traffic engineering that also includes in its objectives the energy consumption of a network in order to develop mechanisms which achieve the same performance as the energy-oblivious approaches at a lower overall energy cost.
- Energy efficient techniques - for reducing energy consumption in data centers. Power Usage Efficiency (PUE) is a well-known key factor in all networks and data centers, both from an environmental and economic point of view.
- Distance working - made possible through ICT solutions, thereby avoiding transportation to work and home again.