Beginning on July 20, 2007, Energy Star’s new specifications for computers went into effect. The new specification applies to a variety of products including desktop and notebook (or laptop) computers, game consoles, integrated computer systems, desktop-derived servers, and workstations. Only the market’s most energy-efficient computing products will qualify for the Energy Star label.
Since computers are in use many more hours per day than in the past, Energy Star has strengthened its requirements to better save energy among computers and related equipment under today’s usage patterns. Qualified products must now meet energy use guidelines in three distinct operating modes: standby, sleep mode, and while computers are being used. This approach ensures energy savings when a computer is active and performing a range of tasks, as well as when standing by. Newly qualified computers must also include a more efficient internal power supply.
By requiring efficiency savings across operating modes, the new computer specification is expected to save consumers and businesses more than $1.8 billion in energy costs over the next 5 years and prevent greenhouse gas emissions equal to the annual emissions of 2.7 million vehicles.
Initially, consumers can expect to see fewer computer models qualifying for Energy Star, as manufacturers change over their product lines to meet the more challenging requirements. This means it is more important than ever to look for the Energy Star label when purchasing a new computer. Manufacturers are required to use the label on products and packaging, in product literature and on websites, to clearly indicate which products qualify. Visit the qualified product list to make sure a computer is qualified under the new specification.