Energy Consumption of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) is rapidly increasing including for the stand-by power consumed by end-use devices when they are switched off or not performing their main function. Stand-by power consumption is an increasing fraction of the European Union’s electricity use and the fast penetration of new and digital technology is increasing this share. It is estimated that stand-by power already accounts for about 10% of the electricity use in homes and offices of the EU Member States.
Technology exists to avoid or reduce stand-by power consumption and improve energy efficiency in all operational modes. As for other energy efficiency initiatives for end-use equipment, actions taken at EU level avoid creating trade barriers as the levels and requirements for equipment will be the same throughout the EU market. Moreover, the more equipment is covered, the larger are the energy and environmental benefits.
In 2000 the European Commission launched the EU Code of Conduct for ICT as a voluntary policy instrument. It was initially targeting the External Power Supplies, and Digital TV Services. Later additional Codes of Conduct were introduced for UPS, Broadband Equipment, and Data Centres.
The Code of Conduct is a flexible mechanism to initiate and develop policy to improve energy efficiency; they create also a forum for industry, experts and Member States where an open and continuous dialogue on market , product and system performance takes place. Through the Code of Conduct ambitious voluntary standards and commitments are set.
Main areas of the Code of Conduct for ICT:
- External power supply units (EPS)
- Digital TV services
- Uninterruptible power supplies (UPS)
- Data Centres
For more details and documentation, visit the Code of Conduct for ICT group on the E3P.