Verdiem Encourages the “Greening” of Personal Computers, Starting with Yours

8/6/08Follow @gthuang

I’ll admit it. The planet would be better off if you stopped reading this and shut down your computer. That’s because your desktop or laptop PC wastes roughly half the energy it consumes and puts out 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide per year. Multiply that by something like a billion PCs worldwide, and you get the idea.

Enter Seattle-based Verdiem, a maker of energy-management software for businesses, founded in 2001. Today the company announced its release of an energy-monitoring tool for consumers, called Edison. You can download it for free, and it helps you keep track of your computer’s energy usage and optimize it based on your work schedule, power and standby settings, and so forth. The user interface shows you in real-time how much you’re saving in energy costs and carbon dioxide emissions. (So maybe you can feel a little less guilty for reading us now.)

A lot of companies and organizations, including Google and the Environmental Protection Agency, are getting into the green-computing trend. Round Rock, TX-based Dell has just declared that its computer-making operations have become carbon neutral, ahead of schedule. And as for today’s consumer software release, Verdiem is partnering with Microsoft—Edison runs only on Windows-based operating systems—and the Climate Savers Computing Initiative.

If 1 percent of all PCs used Edison, said Verdiem CEO Kevin Klustner in a statement, it could potentially reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 7 billion pounds, which is equivalent to taking more than half a million cars off the road. CNET has a nice piece today about taking Verdiem’s new tool for a spin. The writer tried it for four hours and reports that she would be on track to save $30.85 on her power bill and 472.52 pounds of carbon dioxide per year. Modest savings, to be sure, but every little bit helps.

Gregory T. Huang is Xconomy's Deputy Editor, National IT Editor, and the Editor of Xconomy Boston. You can e-mail him at gthuang@xconomy.com or call him at 617-252-7323. Follow @gthuang

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