Green policies would keep UK business busy for up to a year, says research

Premier League football clubs Sunderland and Reading have both recruited RandomStorm's online security management service to protect their online sales and comply with payment card industry standards.

Half of all the decision makers in corporate UK can see no point in a green policy, according to a new study, and half of them are unconvinced that IT is the main cause of the company's carbon footprint.

The report concluded that UK business don't have the time, or the inclination, to commit themselves to green IT policies.

The study, independently commissioned by IT firm Bell Micro, also found that green IT policies in the UK aren't taken seriously. Only eight per cent of companies questioned have a formal environmentally friendly policy and most of those rely on recycling paper, cans and hardware in order to lower their carbon footprint.

Three in four companies are not taking any action to lower their contribution to global warming, according to the research. In a large majority of cases, this inertia is deliberate. Of the 76 per cent (out of a study group of 350 companies) who are ignoring the debate about global warming, a significant majority have no plans at all to reduce their CO2 emissions. On the other hand 15 per cent of companies in the UK (if the study is a representative sample) are willing to lower their carbon footprint, but have yet to formulate or implement a policy.

A significant proportion of companies think a compliant green IT policy is too time consuming. Nearly one in five (18 per cent) said it would take at least a year to plan and implement.

Of those companies that do have a green policy, 85 per cent were found to be using an outsourcing service to handle their IT purchasing and management, but only 27 per cent have questioned the green credentials of their service provider.

Corporate UK has neither the time, the inclination, or motivation to act on the environment, concluded the research. Even those that are aware of green issues see lowering their carbon footprint as a low priority task that they are unlikely to find time for. Green IT is largely seen as a marketing gimmick, according to the sample of companies questioned.

"I am surprised," said Antony Young, Bell Micro's director of services. "What concerns me more is the lack of awareness of the value that new technologies can bring. These are available and can deliver considerable green advantages to a business immediately."

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