By Susan Twombly, June 2009
Did you know that the simple act of turning off your computer can help reduce energy waste, curb carbon emissions and save money? It may be a small change, but it can make a big difference – especially when a global community of people do it together.
Here, HP.com talks with Bonnie Nixon, Director of Environmental Sustainability for HP, and Pete Ekstedt, Global Citizenship Manager for HP’s Asia-Pacific and Japan region, about how the new ‘Power To Change’ campaign can help boost your efforts to go green at work and at home.
HP.com: Pete, you were involved with the ‘Power To Change’ campaign from the start. Tell us about it.
Pete: Sure. ‘Power To Change’ was inspired by HP’s belief that everyone has the power to make little changes that can positively impact the environment. For PC users, that small change can be turning off their computers at the end of the day.
To help, HP is making a new desktop widget available for download at work or home. The widget reminds you to turn off your PC, then it tracks and reports your energy savings.
It also motivates people to spread the word to family and friends and to take part in a global community of people committed to making small changes that can have a big impact on the environment
Bonnie: Over the last couple of years, our customers have become increasingly concerned about the environment and reducing energy consumption – especially in these hard economic times. ‘Power To Change’ is a way they can really take part in saving energy and making a difference in reducing their carbon footprints.
If we can change behavior by the simple act of turning off a PC at the end of the day and get people around the globe involved, just think of the positive impact that could make on the environment. And, by saving energy, you can also save money.
HP.com: What do you think the savings can be?
Pete: Considering PC power costs can be the largest single contributing factor in overall IT energy costs, the cost savings for turning them off at the end of the work day can be significant. We estimate that if 100,000 users shut down their work PCs at the end of each day, it could be the equivalent of eliminating more than 105 cars from the road each day. (1, 2)
HP.com: That’s a lot. So, tell us how the ‘Power to Change’ widget works.
Pete: You go to the ‘Power To Change’ website to download the widget onto work or home PCs and it tracks idle time when the PC is turned on, but not being used. It records whether the PC is switched off each day, estimates the amount of energy and carbon emissions saved and displays the results in a pop-up window.
Bonnie: What’s so exciting is that you can see your results
and results from ‘Power To Change’ users around the world. You can view information by region in real time and compare your savings. It really builds a community feeling of pulling everyone together for a common cause.
HP.com: Are there other widgets that track energy usage out there?
Bonnie: Yes, but the ‘Power To Change’ widget has the global reach of HP behind it. We’ve launched the campaign in five languages across Asia Pacific and Japan, Europe, the Middle East and Africa and the Americas. That’s why we say ‘Power To Change’ can make a world of difference in creating a more sustainable environment.
Pete: We’re reaching out to people through social networks like Facebook, MySpace and Twitter to encourage participation – go check out the YouTube video. There are also ‘Power To Change’ communities for widget users to connect with others, exchange energy-saving ideas and discuss green issues.
HP.com: That’s a great way to get your family and friends involved in saving energy.
Pete: Exactly. If you go to the ‘Power To Change’ website, you’ll find a banner to use on your own website or blog to peak peoples’ interest in participating. There’s also a digital badge for your website, blog or social media pages. That’s a box showing how much energy you’ve saved using the widget. It’s a great way to get some friendly competition going to see who can save the most energy.
Bonnie: There are also stickers and posters to print to help get your colleagues, family, and friends involved, and even your child’s school. Responding to climate change is really about our generation protecting future generations. So, get kids involved now to instill good energy-saving habits early on.
The website also has green things to do and not to do, tips and trivia, and facts and figures on environmental sustainability. You can also check out the blog for campaign updates and comments from HP employees.
HP.com: How long will the ‘Power To Change’ campaign run?
Bonnie: It runs from June to October. But our work won’t stop there. The widget is just one step to help customers save energy. We also have a range of energy-efficient HP products and power management tools for work and home.
It’s all part of our commitment to offer solutions that are good for customers, good for business and good for the planet. It comes down to this: If we’re going to help reduce climate change, we all have to do our part.
HP.com: Pete, anything else you’d like to add?
Pete: Yes, I want to send a message to each reader: You have the power to impact great change every day with one simple act: turning off your PC. The power of one, multiplied by the power of many can really make a difference.
1The energy savings are estimated based on a benchmark study conducted by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories in 2004 and UK Energy Saving Trust in 2007.
2Equivalency determined by EPA calculations.