How much power do computers use?

Data centers, desktops, printers and other IT equipment now accounts for around 40 percent of the power bill of large corporations, according to Kartik Ravel, practice director of Green IT at Fujitsu America. At hedge funds and financial services firms, where complex transactional software churns constantly, it can be 70 percent to 80 percent of the bill.

To that end, Fujitsu is taking an energy efficiency program developed in Australia three years ago on a worldwide tour. Under the program, Fujitsu consultants examine your entire organization and trim down the IT assets for efficiency. Some of the more obvious solutions involve getting employees to print on both sides of a sheet of paper or resetting the sleep functions on their PCs, but there are more subtle recommendations (load shifting, de-duplication) as well.  The program came out of Australia because the country was implementing a series of energy efficiency regulations at the time.

As obvious as some of the answers sound, they apparently work. Fujitsu says it can curb IT power spending by 20 percent in eight months. Toyota Australia retained the firm and cut its IT power bill by 43 percent. IBM, NEC, Verdiem, Cisco and others offer additional services and software for these tasks.

Fujitsu hopes to also take these tools and consulting methodologies to  tackle facilities management, i.e., over-air-conditioned offices and lighting management.

A "quick start" evaluation runs $25,000. The company will also do longer, more detailed engagements.