4. Green IT

4.1. At OUCS

The University, and OUCS, have been in several discussions surrounding the overall reduction of power consumption, carbon emissions, etc. There are several drivers behind all of this - the fluctuating costs of electricity and gas, the emerging consensus on the challenges facing the environment, legislation emerging from the Government, and so on.

As part of this, OUCS is committed to enacting some key measures in an attempt to reduce its consumption and overall impact and is effectively acting as a case study for other departments to follow. We have a published Energy Policy Statement which also includes guidance on recycling and have been greatly assisted by attracting funding from JISC to work on the low-carbon IT project, which in turn has led to the monitoring and Wake-on-LAN service.

A set of pages have been produced on Green IT which begin to set out some guidelines and results of previous studies: www.oucs.ox.ac.uk/greenit.

4.2. How Green is My Tally?

So how green is Oxford University? Not very according to the People and Planet league table for 2009 peopleandplanet.org/green-league-2009

Oxford is now 84th, slipped from 50th last year. Oxford Brookes is up to 3rd and Cambridge has nabbed Oxford’s previous spot at 50th (from 8th). Oxford is in the category “Third Class Awards”.

While much of the methodology used is paper pushing, one of the most concerning scores is “carbon emissions per head” where we score “awful”. OUCS hopes to help the University create and manage greener IT services to improve this score in the future - IT is about 10% of the University electricity bill and 1 kWh is currently 0.537 kg CO2eq in the UK.

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