Strategic Concept 5: Economic and sustainable

Purpose:  Lowering costs, saving the planet

“Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.” – Theodore Roosevelt

Description: In times of perpetually stretched state budgets, it is essential to design our operations, services, and workforce to meet the rigors – present and future – of doing more with less.  Economic and sustainable means reducing our carbon footprint.  It means ensuring, that with a rapidly dwindling workforce, we have the expertise and flexibility to meet our human capital needs.  It means promoting the use of technologies throughout the state to enhance California’s workforce, such as the California Broadband Task Force’s recommendations on the deployment and adoption of Broadband technologies.  In essence, it means aligning our operations, agenda, and goals to be relevant and applicable in perpetuity; balancing the demands of today with the challenges of the future. 

Strategy 1:  Promote practices that protect the environment and reduce energy usage

Goal 1.A:  Ensure that strategically sourced contracts IT hardware include the most stringent energy and environmental requirements.

Goal 1.B:  Incorporate proven green technologies into the state’s IT infrastructure.

Goal 1.C:  Utilize sources of green energy for state data centers.

Goal 1.D:  Require the use of energy-efficient equipment and technologies in IT project approval process. 

Goal 1.E:  Replace end-of-life desktops with energy-efficient laptops.

Strategy 2:  Ensure the disaster resiliency of state’s IT infrastructure

Strategy 3:  Support Innovation

Strategy 4:  Create IT bench strength

Bottom Line:  The IT community must establish leadership by engaging in an effective governance structure for the management of technology.  Considered policies should give direction to government agencies on IT requirements and standards.  Solutions that benefit recipients of services will be of highest priority.  Shared facilities and infrastructures should enable government agencies to deliver their programs while balancing the demands of today with the challenges of the future. 

The following describes how other states’ IT organizations are projecting the concept of economic and sustainable into their futures.

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Green IT in Enterprise Practices: The Essential Role of the State CIO

Oregon Policy Embracing Acquisition and Disposal of Electronic Products

In support of the Governor's Sustainability Executive Order, Oregon adopted a policy addressing the acquisition and disposal of computers and monitors. The policy adopts EPEAT standards for acquisition of electronic products. It also addresses e-waste in that excess electronic products must be refurbished for reuse, disposed of through statewide electronic recycling contracts or returned to manufacturers through contract “buyback” provisions for ultimate disposition in a manner that prevents hazardous materials from entering the waste stream. The primary e-waste contract for state agencies and other public entities in Oregon is a joint venture with a qualified rehabilitation facility (QRF). The contract allows the state to achieve its objectives of providing secure, sustainable, cost effective e-waste options and meaningful employment for people with disabilities.

Kansas Implements Desktop Power Management Initiative

In Kansas, power management software which automatically powers down idle computer components after a pre-set period of time has been installed on all Department of Administration desktop computers. In December of 2007, the Kansas Division of Information Systems and Communications (DISC) implemented a tool to centrally manage power settings on Windows client workstations.

North Carolina’s Consolidation Program

North Carolina is improving their state’s IT related carbon footprint through process, technology and architectural improvements. This consolidation initiative, a statewide strategic effort, is implementing these improvements across all state agencies. This multi-year program will help reduce carbon footprint by decreasing the amount of data centers, servers and associated IT infrastructure that are required to deliver services to their residents and employees. This program is in its second execution phase, and the eight participating agencies will eliminate their local data centers and will reduce the number of physical servers by 35 percent.

Data Center Energy Efficiency a Goal for Washington State

The State of Washington is currently in the process of planning for a new data center for their IT enterprise. State office buildings in Washington must now be built to be compliant with a LEED Silver rating at a minimum. While the nature of a data center is not compatible with this level of compliance, the state is working to ensure they have an efficient data center that aligns with their state’s green goals of energy efficiency and minimal environmental impact. Locating the data center on the state campus in Olympia, they are focusing on three areas that will lend to energy efficiency— roof handlers for airside cooling, implementing a comprehensive virtualization program, and investing in super-efficient uninterrupted power supply.

Making Wind into Energy in Montana

Cascade County, Montana, is finding extra revenue in an unexpected place. Through wind turbines, the air that flows through rural Cascade County and many other parts of Montana can be captured and utilized to produce an alternative source for energy, contributing to overall carbon footprint reduction. The County utilized its pre-existing GIS tool, which showed wind providers information about the land that they could not get anywhere else from just one application. The tax revenue from the wind turbines, as well as the extra income given to landowners, adds up to significant revenue for the county and a cleaner environment through alternative energy.

Tracking Carbon Sequestration in Pennsylvania:

Through enhancements to Pennsylvania’s Seamless Digital Base Map (PAMAP), the Commonwealth has the ability to continually measure statewide biomass changes and forest carbon sequestration. Through their work on the Midwest Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership, they have mapped major Pennsylvania stationary carbon emissions sources and potential geologic sinks in the western part of the state. The state hopes to map geologic sequestration resources for the entire Commonwealth over the next 3-5 years and plans to develop protocols for siting and operating state geologic sequestration projects. Through the use of GIS technology, Pennsylvania is able to track and monitor carbon sequestration in the Commonwealth.

Arizona Turns to Web Conferencing

The state of Arizona has adopted web conferencing technology throughout their agencies as a means to cut mileage, fuel, vehicle use and travel; the software charts the distance between web conference participants and then calculates cost savings based on the likely method of travel and the amount of fuel that would be used. Overall, the state of Arizona has tracked a C02 footprint saving of 300,000 pounds in the first quarter of 2008.
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