Green IT Initiatives

Thursday, October 30 | 3:20PM–5:20PM | Room W208A-C
Supporting our institutions' sustainability efforts and responses to climate change will be a key role for higher education IT in the decades to come. This showcase will provide a framework for discussions on your campus and give you an opportunity to talk with colleagues from green IT initiatives that are making a strategic difference now.

Focus: ECAR Research Bulletin: Climate Change, Campus Commitments, and IT
Suresh Balakrishnan, University System of Maryland
The introductory remarks will highlight findings from the ECAR research bulletin Climate Change, Campus Commitments, and IT. The report identifies more than 30 appropriate initiatives that are under way on campuses today—ranging from low implementation difficulty with low-impact results to high implementation difficulty with high-impact results—and identifies key questions to frame the green IT conversation on your campus.

Focus: Consolidation/Virtualization of Servers
Mark Askren, University of California Irvine
UC Irvine's production experience with server virtualization over the past two years has resulted in multiple complementary benefits beyond the initial primary goals of increasing productivity and reducing hardware expenses. Server virtualization has also proven to be a significant component of our green IT initiatives by diminishing energy consumption.

Focus: Community Awareness and Action Strategies for Recycling IT-Generated Waste
Fran White, Goucher College
Community awareness education and engagement are critical when dealing with IT-affiliated waste. This discussion will include successful recycling strategies from an institutional perspective (regular PC upgrade cycles), student-driven efforts (donating used electronics to charities), and how to handle outmoded structures and equipment (classrooms, labs, printers) and other waste generated by the pervasive presence of IT on campus.

Focus: Telework, Telemeetings, and Energy Star Bulk Buy
Robin Anderson, The Pennsylvania State University
Information Technology Services (ITS) at Penn State has implemented several green IT initiatives, including telecommuting and alternative work schedules, technology trade-in recycling and eco-delivery efforts, and web-based desktop technology for online meetings. ITS also is partnering with other university organizations to aggressively promote an environmental stewardship awareness campaign.

Focus: The Green Data Center: Facilities and Configuration
Dallas Thornton, San Diego Supercomputer Center
A look at the new SDSC facility will include a discussion of industry best practices and identify the most valuable improvements. Topics will include data center power and cooling considerations, growing trends such as changing temperature and humidification tolerances, implementing hot/cold isle containment, automated monitoring and control tools, free cooling techniques and opportunities, and higher voltage (lower loss) power distribution options.


  • Robin Anderson

    Director, Customer Communications, The Pennsylvania State University
  • Mark Askren

    Leadership Coach, MOR Associates, Inc.
  • Suresh Balakrishnan

    Asst. Vice Chancellor and Deputy CIO, University System of Maryland
  • Dallas Thornton

    Deputy CIO, Infrastructure Services and Operations, Clemson University
  • Frances White

Resources & Downloads