Monday, June 9, 2008

Environmental awareness – are private consumers buying green PCs?

Environmental awareness – are private consumers buying green PCs?
Fujitsu Siemens Computers sees a pressing need to increase awareness for green IT in the region

Today, environmental awareness is considered to be good form, and since Al Gore committed himself to saving planet Earth the "green" debate has become a thoroughly acceptable topic. However, many see this as enormous media hype that only confuses the consumer. Fujitsu Siemens Computers launched the first SCALEO Green PC for consumers, offering more than hype to substantiate its efforts in promoting green IT. With this, the company is first IT provider with a complete range of environmentally friendly solutions for data centers, offices and private households.

The green PC was developed to satisfy customer requirements for both private and commercial use. Green products account for about 75% of Professional PCs sold by Fujitsu Siemens Computers.

“While the regions IT industry is fast changing its attitude towards the environment and adopting ways to reduce toxicity, users should be ready to change their behavior towards the environment by making green choices. However, recent sales figures show that environmental awareness and knowledge about environmental protection on the part of the public still leave room for improvement,” explains Stephane Rejasse, Managing Director for Fujitsu Siemens Computers, Middle East. "With our green PC concept we want to offer a genuine green alternative to the buying patterns of private customers, whose collective environmental awareness is slowly on the rise. Our aim is for private customers to buy in the same environmentally conscious way as our business customers.

In order to manage that, private consumers need clarity. "We as a company see it as the duty of the IT branch of industry, the economy, and the media to increase awareness," continues Rejasse. "As an industry that makes a significant contribution towards worldwide energy consumption, we are obliged to explain in detail that there is more to environmental protection than just media hype. Consumers can reduce their effect on the environment and at the same time save energy, which considering the increase in energy prices is ultimately a real cost benefit for our customers."

Consequently, the pressure on companies not to launch misleading environmental protection measures is also on the increase, and they are compelled to sell only genuine "green" products as such and to thus invest in the research and development of environmentally friendly products.

Fujitsu Siemens Computers believes the regions media is playing a significant role in spreading eco-awareness. Rejasse adds: "The public needs to revise its thinking and we are helping the private and individual consumers to make the right decision by providing detailed information through the media and direct interaction. Behaving in an environmentally friendly way does not mean doing without the comfort and technology of the modern world. The customer's purchase decisions can also highlight this issue and force business to align technical innovation and design with the environment. Turning the lights out for a few minutes once a year does very little for the environment itself; Energy-efficient light bulbs, low-consumption cars and the like are a good start, but no more than just that - a start."

The company recently ran a series of ‘Green IT’ business events in UAE and Saudi Arabia, involving a number of its customers to discuss the merits and suitability of more sustainable, environmentally-friendly IT systems for the Middle East region.

The SCALEO Green PC makes it clear how environmentally friendly a computer can be and what can be achieved by a company with the appropriate research and development: the PC has acquired the Nordic Swan, Blue Angel and Energy Star certificates. All these certificates are based on very stringent guidelines so that the customer can be completely certain that he has not just bought a supposedly green product, but has actively done something for the environment.