Dell Powers Campus On 100 Percent Green Power

In conjunction with the company's commitment to be 100 percent carbon neutral by the end of 2008, it now powers 100 percent of its 2.1 million square-foot global headquarters with green power provided by Waste Management and TXU Energy.

In addition to transitioning to 100 percent green energy, Dell has worked to reduce its carbon footprint by replacing light bulbs in its facilities with energy-efficient varieties, updated its heating and air conditioning systems to run on less power and implemented a system to power down computers not in use.

"Those savings have been the equivalent of saving about 20,000 tons of CO2 emissions just here on this campus, and we think that's an important step to have taken," said Paul Bell, president, Dell Americas. Dell has also saved about $2 million in power costs by implementing efficiency measures and is targeting a 5 percent total power cost reduction, he said.

"As a company we certainly are always looking at ways to be more efficient and save costs. That's a big theme in our company right now. In this particular topic, we believe in what's good for the environment and what's good for our own operating expenses can be very consistent," Bell said.

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Dell is purchasing methane-based power through Waste Management's Austin Community Landfill gas-to-energy plant, which uses methane generated by organic material decomposition in its landfills to produce electricity. That source fulfills 40 percent of the campus' power needs. The remaining 60 percent will come from TXU Energy's wind farms.

Dell also announced that its Austin Palmer Campus is increasing its green power consumption, and that its Twin Falls, Idaho, facility also runs on 100 percent green power, 97 percent of which is wind power. The rest is solar powered.

The company's facilities around the globe are being updated with more energy efficient lighting and cooling and it is also working to reduce energy consumption by powering down devices not in use, Bell said.

Dell is in discussion with relevant local providers in each community where it has a facility to push green power sourcing, but green power availability will vary by location, he said. "We want to offer ourselves as someone who would like to partner with them and bring these solutions together."

The company's suppliers are also facing Dell's power-conscious scrutiny and the company requires them to disclose their carbon footprints and encourages them to become more efficient. "We think our suppliers have a role that we'd like them to continue to play to make sure they are also being as environmentally responsible as they can in their operations," Bell said.