Department of State

Green IT - Automatic Shutdown of Computer Workstations

Embassy Dar es Salaam instituted a daily scheduled shutdown of its 300 computer workstations during typical non-use hours. This has reduced power usage to approximately 33% of what it previously was. Instead of computer workstations powered up 168 hours per week (24 hours x 7 days), now they are only powered up 56 hours per week, with estimated electricity cost savings at over $3000 per month, or $36,000 per year. The vast majority of users do not even notice the shutdown since it takes place during non-working hours, and it can be easily over-ridden by users if need be. In a place like Tanzania where electricity is very expensive and unavailable to the majority of the population, our carbon footprint is reduced in a significant way while bringing immense cost savings to the Mission.


Green IT is a simple and cost-effective initiative to cut waste across the entire Federal Government. Many other Embassies are already implementing automatic shutdown. It just requires agencies to provide guidance to IT units on how to set-up automatic shutdown without compromising the system automatic updates.


If every Federal Government agency implemented Green IT for computer workstations worldwide, we would see (1) a tremendous cost savings to the USG in energy costs; and (2) a significant reduction in our global carbon footprint.



Idea No. 5500