A trip back to the future...of green IT

Christopher Mines [Posted by Christopher Mines]

I had the privilege of hosting the Green IT 2009 conference in London back in May and wanted to share a couple of observations about that terrific event. I often tell clients in the U.S. that I am taking "a trip to the future" when I go to Europe; in particular, UK public sector organizations are probably the most advanced anywhere in terms of green IT behaviors (or should I say behaviours?).

Two statements I heard from IT procurement people at the conference that should be on the radar screen for vendor strategists looking to anticipate the next wave of enterprises' green requirements, and for IT planners looking to get more aggressive about their company's green IT initiatives:

  • Requirements for longer-lifecycle IT equipment. Planned obsolence is going to become obsolete. Expect your customers to require longer warranty periods, modular/upgradeable designs, and lifecycle-based carbon footprint analysis from you and your gear. Companies are realizing that, as one conference attendee put it, "we puts lots of bodies in motion" when they order new equipment.
  • Increasing demand for green/renewable energy. No matter how efficient a data center is, it can't really be green unless it's powered by green energy.

Forrester's latest survey data on enterprise adoption of green IT practices, including differences across geographies, is summarized in an archived teleconference here. My next trip across the pond will be in November and I look forward to connecting with our UK and European clients again then.