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GreenITWe’ve all heard about being green. We should recycle, not waste water, and use as little electricity as possible. But what about being green when we deal with our technology? Many of us assume that because our different technological devices cost so much and are so advanced, they can save electricity on their own. Sadly, this is not the reality. GreenIT is a committee within the USF ITS department, which meets periodically to find ways to help USF cut down on energy waste that has to do with technology and how to build awareness about how to save energy and minimize e-waste.

USF holds an annual Earth day event in which the GreenIT team participates. They explain to passersby about the different ways they may achieve a greener technological footprint then they have so far.

Some of the most common ways to save energy can be found on the GreenIT website. Here is a quick rundown on what you can do with very little extra effort:

  1. Turn your computer off when you are done for the day
  2. Use your computer’s power management settings
  3. Keep your personal printer off when not in use
  4. Think before you print
  5. If you must print, print double-sided
  6. Reduce the brightness of your monitor
  7. Always recycle printer cartridges and paper
  8. Don’t use a screen saver
  9. Use a “Smart Strip” power strip
  10. Look for the Energy Star when you shop

You’ve probably used a normal power strip at some point in your life, but Smart Strips are even handier than those. Basically, there is a “parent plug” which you can typically use to plug in your TV. The next few plugs are “child plugs.” In these plugs, you plug in things that connect to your TV; such as your DVD player or video game console. So when you turn off your TV, not only is the TV turned off, but so is everything that is attached to the “child plugs.” The Smart Strip is so clever that it can detect when you aren’t using a certain plug, and automatically turns that attached device off. The Smart Strip also has a few normal plugs, which aren’t connected to the “parent plug,” which can be used for things that you want to be constantly plugged in. You can find one of many versions of Smart Strips here.

If you are interested in learning more about Green IT, or have any suggests, feel free to email them at greenit@usfca.edu.When it comes to technology, we need to concentrate on how much e-waste we generate, especially since all it usually takes is a press of a button or the flip of a switch.

For information on how the university is working toward sustainability, visit the USF Green Team website.


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