IT has become one of the biggest consumers of energy in the modern society. So much so that at AGL Energy, "we ran out of capacity in the building for electricity", according to former CIO Cesare Tizi.
Tizi, who was awarded ZDNet Australia's CIO of the year 2007 award, is a self-proclaimed environmentalist and acknowledges that running out of electricity at an energy company is a little ironic.
Tizi blames modern datacentre technology for drawing too much power: "The density of servers we can now get, through virtualisation but also through the high density rack mounted types, use up a lot of energy. These servers in turn generate a lot of heat, which means a need for additional air-conditioning."
Thus the need to save power is paramount, which has resulted in "green issues becoming quite significant."
Tizi points to a number of simple innovations that can make a big difference such as: having servers in environmentally controlled, refrigerated, cold computer rooms, while keeping the power supply outside. Likewise, the switch from CRT to LCD monitors can make a difference.