After watching a few acts on Live Earth at the weekend I wondered how I could use this little space on the web to make a difference, and help reduce CO2 emissions. Then I remembered a PC Pro campaign launched in 2005 called "Switch IT off". Since then there have been lots of switch it off days to try and raise awareness.
Essentially these campaigns are set-up to encourage businesses and home users to switch-off their appliances instead of keeping them in standby when not in use.
PC Pro did a lot of research into office and home electronics. One particular phenomenon to which most non-IT people are unaware of is the fact that when you shut your PC down, it still carries on consuming electricity.
The ATX power supplies used in all modern desktop computers continue to supply the motherboard with a small amount of electricity to enable it to wake-on-LAN. Now the energy PCs use in this state is minimal, but it is still wasted energy nevertheless. The only way to completely shut a computer down is to turn it off at the mains, or flick the switch on the ATX power supply located at the back of the PC.
The general message of the Switch IT Off campaign is to get people into the habit of turning appliances off rather than using the standby option. Offices that get their staff to turn their PCs and monitors off every evening could save thousands of pounds a year in electricity bills and help reduce our CO2 emissions.
For more information read the full PC Pro Switch IT Off article...