Do you think that the IT industry is considered a "clean industry"?

Chapter 11, Mrs. Larson, 4-9-14


Answer-yes, the IT industry has helped to find many different type of technologies such as solar panels and long lasting LED light bulbs that are meant to be able to work for years at a time.

Positive Aspect: New technologies made to make the world less polluted. Cutting down on E-waste by limiting the materials we throw away. Three R's Reduce Reuse Recycle.

Man wants to reduce their consumption of energy to help make the world more efficient and not cost as much to live.

Ideas that man kind should reuse cell phones is backed up by companies that buy used phones to use their parts for the new technologies.

Companies are made to try to recycle old computer parts especially ones that will be very bad for the environment.

Environmental Impacts

Positive Impacts on the Environment:

- increasing use of 'smart' systems in devices like washing machines and 'smart homes' leads to more efficient use of water and power; email and electronic documents can reduce the use of paper
- Internet communications reduce the need for heavily polluting physical travel.

Concerns about the IT industry and its environmental impacts:

- The amount of resources used during manufacture
- The speed with which products become obsolete and new ones are manufactured
- The use of dangerous chemicals in the manufacturing process, affecting factory workers
- The amount of power consumed by IT equipment
- The pollution caused by old IT equipment
- The pollution caused by old IT equipment when it is discarded

Power Consumption

This has always been a key issue for mobile devices.
When people buy new phones, they are selected by their battery lives.

- Search engines, social networking sites, and cloud computing sites store vast amounts of information on their computer systems, usually in data centers.


- The amount of energy consumed by data centers
- The source of energy, which is normally from nonrenewable sources

SOLUTIONS - for  power consumptions

1. The POWER SETTINGS on laptop and desktop computers can be used to switch devices and individual components to low energy or standby modes after a period of inactivity.

2. Modern processors also offer SPEED THROTTLING systems such as AMD's PowerNow and Cool n Quiet, or Intel's SpeedStep.
- These reduce the CLOCK SPEED (speed of a processor, ms in ticks per second) of the processor if it is not being used intensively, saving energy, reducing heat output, and saving further energy used for cooling.
- Speed throttling systems increase the clock speed if a DEMANDING application is used...

3. Blade Servers offer  improved energy consumption
- BLADE SERVERS are modular systems which allow circuit boards containing processors and memory to be added to a blade enclosure, which provides shared power and cooling.
** The large amount of processing power available in one space means blade servers are also useful for running VIRTUAL MACHINES
(software application that runs a virtual 'computer' inside a window) and VIRTUALISATION SOFTWARE (uses a system in a virtual machine)

Resource depletion

- Although microchips are small, dozens of pounds of highly toxic chemicals are used during the manufacturing process.
- Chips are repeatedly heated, etched, and cleaned with purified water, consuming large amounts of energy and resulting in many gallons of water being contaminated with carcinogens and chemicals linked to birth defects

- Silicon Valley is the 'birthplace' of the computer revolution.
- It is now one of the most polluted places in the US, in part because of IT manufacturing plants

- Harmful chemicals linked to illnesses in factory workers, including rates of cancers and birth defects up to five times the average.

Textbooks vs. e-books

The pollution by manufacture, delivery, use and eventual disposal must be considered

To every POSITIVE aspects, there are NEGATIVE aspects:

1. No trees need to be cut down to produce paper
1. Each E-BOOK reader requires an estimated 33 pounds of minerals and 79 gallons of water to produce

2. No additional resources are needed and INSTANT electronic transfer REDUCES the need to SHIP books across the country or drive to a bookshop.
3. E-book readers USE extremely energy efficient displays.
- They use LESS energy than standard light bulb
- The life expectancy is significantly shorter than paper books
- Pollution is caused by incorrect disposal of electronic devices is a significant environmental concern

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