Green IT Initiatives – Monitors

If you need a new monitor, you’ll probably choose a flat screen (LCD) monitor.  LCD monitors use less energy than the television style (CRT) monitors about 30-50% less which will give you a few dollars savings each year per monitor.  When you look at the total carbon footprint calculations, you can realize a bit more savings, but it is complicated.  Some use square feet of table/desk space as an economic evaluation factor.  Since CRTs take up more space than LCDs for similar sized displays, you can realize square foot savings which is often considerably more than the energy savings. Carbon footprint and space utilization may or may not be part of your analysis

Here are a few things you may not have thought about.  You have to take into account the  the cost of a new monitor, the cost to acquire (driving or shipping) and the impact on the environment both for manufacturing the new LCD and for disposing of the CRT.  CRT’s generate more heat than LCDs which is terrible when you have the air conditioner on, but not so bad when it’s cold outside.

Bottom Line – We all know that being good stewards of the environment includes saving energy and proper disposal of waste.  So with your new or old monitor, follow these easy steps:

  1. Turn off your monitor when not in use. Always turn off when leaving work or going to bed.  Screen savers are cool but waste energy because they do not power down the monitor.  Instead of a screen saver, try power save mode.
  2. Choose the right monitor size and arrangement for maximum productivity. Often smaller monitors in a dual configuration can be more efficient than a single large monitor.
  3. Properly dispose of computer monitors through a certified recycler.  Never throw in the trash or a dumpster.
About Mary

Mary is the CEO of LAN Systems. She is an electrical engineer who feels her greatest strength is the ability to connect with people. LAN Systems provides IT managed services and solutions to growing companies and non-profit organizations. You can contact Mary at

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