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he Greening Government ICT strategy,the details of which are about to bepublished, is intended to minimise theimpact of the UK Government on theenvironment, reduce greenhouse gas emissions andwaste whilst delivering high quality customer centricpublic services. This strategy covers all central andlocal government offices and is in line with the UKGovernment's ICT Strategy launched in March 2011together with the Greening Government Commitmentsto achieve a 25 per cent reduction in greenhouse gasemissions by 2015.Covering the full life cycle impact of Government ICT,the strategy introduces key and far-reaching initiativesand commitments from procurement of ICT through tothe disposal of it. It is therefore important tounderstand the strategy's implications for the publicsector, ICT suppliers and the UK economy as a whole,as well as the opportunities that this strategy presentsboth environmentally and economically. This articleaddresses these main areas whilst examining two keystrands of the Greening Government ICT strategy -how the ICT's impact on the environment can bereduced and how ICT can be harnessed to enablewide-reaching emission reductions.OVERVIEWThe Greening Government ICT Strategy highlights fourkey Green ICT Commitment areas for Governmentorganisations to address. These include greening theGovernment's existing ICT; greening Government acrossthe lifecycle of ICT products and services; working withsuppliers and external partners to achieve green ICT;and exploiting ICT for the greening of governmentoperations and services. Included within these fourareas are ten targets with delivery timescales from April2012 to April 2015. Key elements discussed in the strategy document includeremoving surplus and redundant ICT; sharing ICTinfrastructure and services across Government; reducingdata centres; addressing the energy consumption of datacentres; extending the service life of existing devices suchas PCs, laptops and mobile phones; re-using more ICT;exploiting ICT for the reduction of travel and paper; andencouraging behavioural changes within Government insupport of green working practices.The Greening Government ICT strategy is on the wholevery positive, providing an important step forward intackling greenhouse gas emissions. The Government isa major user of ICT and so it is key that Governmentrecognises the part it needs to play in driving changeand also the importance of leading by example.The factthat the strategy addresses the whole lifecycle of ICTensures that no part of the supply chain is being missed,driving change from the development through to thedisposal of ICT. This holistic approach should create aripple effect throughout the ICT industry and across UKbusiness as a whole. Importantly, the GreeningGovernment ICT Strategy does not just discuss thenegative impact of ICT on the environment, it alsorecognises that ICT can be a vital enabler of change,helping to cut carbon emissions and waste whilstdelivering significant efficiency savings. This positiveimpact of ICT should not be under-estimated.WHAT DOES THE STRATEGY MEAN FORGOVERNMENT ORGANISATIONS? Once the Greening Government ICT Strategy has beenpublished, Government organisations will be requiredTHEIMPACTS OFTHEGREENING GOVERNMENTICT STRATEGY INFORMATION & COMMUNICATION 068TECHNOLOGYDEAN DICKINSON, MANAGING DIRECTOR (PUBLIC SECTOR AND ENTERPRISE), ADVANCED BUSINESS SOLUTIONS TAbove:Simon Fowler,Managing Director,Advanced BusinessSolutions (Commercial)Right: Dean Dickinson

INFORMATION & COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY069to meet a number of criteria and targets. Measurementand reporting of environmental impacts will benecessary using the Green ICT Maturity Assessmentmodel, which will provide a common framework toshow progress across the whole of Government. Themodel will be used to report improvement on managingICT services, technology and change and theexploitation of ICT.Government departments will also be required to reporton operational ICT energy consumption, apply theEuropean Union Code of Conduct for Data Centresacross all new data centres by April 2015 and adopt theGreen ICT Standards Charter which will be produced byGovernment by April 2013. Government departmentswill also be encouraged to publish inter-departmentalenergy reduction league tables to foster transparencyand to encourage those departments that are laggingbehind the rest to improve their green efforts. The practical day-to-day implications of the strategy willbe significant. Government departments will need toproduce a detailed asset register of all ICT so that it canbe determined which infrastructure, technologies andapplications are surplus, redundant and/or can be re-used/recycled. Departments will also be expected toextend the life of existing ICT technologies for as long aspossible. For instance, a PC getting to the end of its lifecould be re-configured for use as a thin client device.Shared services is a key area of the strategy, requiringGovernment departments to look at ways to share andconsolidate ICT. For instance, can data centres beshared? Can a number of Government departmentsuse the same finance and human resources systems?There will be an expectation on Governmentdepartments to work collaboratively and share ICTinfrastructure and technologies.Government departments should also be prepared tolook at cloud computing as an alternative ICT deliverymethod. Hosting IT in the cloud, which provides IT ondemand over the internet, means that a number oforganisations' applications can be hosted by just onedata centre (managed by a third party cloud provider).The on demand nature of cloud computing alsoensures that IT is accessed as and when it is needed,providing an efficient use of resources.The strategy recognises that behavioural changes ofGovernment staff will be necessary to ensure success.For instance, collaborative procurement across thepublic sector will be encouraged and staff need to bemotivated to turn off equipment when they leave theoffice, print less and arrange teleconferences insteadof face to face meetings. Government departmentsneed to be prepared to actively engage staffand to develop initiatives so that staffare motivated to behave in asustainable manner and arerewarded for their greenefforts. Government departments will also be requiredto invest in ICT that reduces unnecessary businesstravel such as audio and video conferencing facilitiesand mobile technologies, and which promotespaperless working as well as improved collaboration,ultimately bringing about smarter and moresustainable working. Therefore, the requirements ofGovernment departments and the targets laid out inthe strategy document are significant and demanding.Departments will need to think smartly, sustainablyand collaboratively in order to ensure strategy success. THE IMPACT OF THE STRATEGY ON ICTSUPPLIERS - CO-OPERATION ANDOPPORTUNITYOf course, the Government alone cannot deliver asuccessful strategy. ICT suppliers also need to buy-in tothe strategy and to be engaged with the Government'sgreen ICT vision to become as energy efficient aspossible and for the targets to be realised. ICT suppliersare impacted in a number of ways by the strategy and itis encouraging to see an open dialogue between theGovernment, suppliers and UK technology groups tobring about change collaboratively. Government will be working with suppliers, technologygroups and other stakeholders to produce aResponsible Supplier Code of Practice by April 2013" "GOVERNMENTDEPARTMENTSWILL BE ENCOURAGED TO PUBLISH INTER-DEPARTMENTALENERGY REDUCTIONLEAGUE TABLES TO FOSTER TRANSPARENCY