If you are reading this, then you have likely have a computer and this will apply to you. If your computer is at home, it uses more energy than all of the other office equipment you have nearby combined. The problem is that turning off your computer every time you leave for a few minutes and then turning it on again is a hassle for many people, especially having to wait for the computer to load each time.
Furthermore, a lot of people don’t even realize they are wasting energy. There is a misconception that screen savers reduce the amount of energy the computer is using. Unfortunately, this is a myth and a computer running a screen saver is using just as much energy as one in use. There is, however, a way to save energy without the inconvenience of constantly turning on and off your computer.
All computer monitors come with a low-power “sleep” or “stand-by” mode that can be automatically triggered when your computer has been inactive for a certain period of time. To get your computer out of the sleep mode, all you need to do is simply touch the mouse or keyboard and the monitor will “wake-up” within seconds. This avoids the unpleasantness of waiting for your computer to load each time.
To accomplish this, you need to set up your computer to automatically go into sleep mode when you are away from your computer. You can set this up easily in a couple of minutes by using the Government’s EnergyStar EZ Wizard Web Based Software Tool. Taking a few minutes to set this up, you’ll save 100kWh to 600 kWh per year depending on your computer-use habits. That adds up to between $8.50 and $51.00 a year saved.
If you want to get more information on how much energy is wasted by computers being left on and their environmental impact, you can listen to an interesting National Public Radio interview on this subject. Passing the information onto your boss at work will not only help the environment, it can also save your company a lot of money.