Green IT


  • The practice of Green Information Technology (Green IT) seeks to minimize certain byproducts of the manufacturing and use of communications technology.
  • These byproducts have adverse environmental effects, including greenhouse gas emissions, plastic pollution, and electronic waste.
  • At NC State, Green IT is mainly focused on computing in environmentally sustainable ways by:
    • Conserving electricity
    • Managing electronic devices
    • Reducing paper usage
    • Minimizing electronic waste

OIT’s role

  • By practicing Green IT, OIT is helping NC State reduce its “carbon pawprint” and advance sustainability.
  • OIT works in partnership with the University Sustainability Office and others on campus.
  • For NC State’s Green IT rating, see Sustainability.

What you can do

Buy efficient, certified electronics

Manage your power settings

  • Energy Star recommends setting computers to enter standby or hibernate mode after 15-60 minutes of inactivity and monitors to enter sleep mode after 5-20 minutes of inactivity.
  • On your laptop, activate both AC and battery power-saving profiles. To find out how, consult your computer’s online Help or see Activate Power Management on Your Computer.

Deactivate your screensaver

A modern computer screen does not need a screensaver, which uses a lot of electricity and may override your power management settings.

Turn off unused devices

  • When you are not using your computer, power it down.
  • Powering your computer up again does not take more energy than keeping it running.
  • Don’t power up your peripherals (e.g., printers, scanners) until you need them.

Conserve paper

  • Save files electronically instead of in paper form.
  • Read documents and emails on-screen.
  • For necessary printing, use both sides of paper when you can.
  • Conduct business electronically instead of in-person or by mail. This will also save gas and transport emissions.
  • Use recycled paper.
  • Recycle used paper whenever possible.


  • Donate old computers and mobile devices to others — but first make sure you remove all personal information!
  • Take your unusable electronics to a reputable e-cycler.
  • Visit Recycling Guide.


NC State provides resources for online work and study to avoid driving to and from campus. See Telecommuting Resources.

Think Green IT!

  • Learn how you can implement other sustainable solutions.
  • Join in the efforts of the Sustainability community at NC State today.