To raise awareness of the impact of IT energy consumption, Friday August 27 is “Power IT Down Day“. The idea is this — turn off your laptops, desktops, monitors, printers, and anything you’re not using for the weekend.

To do my own part, I have installed a TED monitoring device at my home in San Francisco (since PG&E has decided that Silver Spring’s technology is not able to handle the density and elevation changes in San Francisco, as told by a P&E representative in a recent SVLG meeting).

I used this data to decide what to turn off and its impact when I go out of town. I found that I can unplug my printer, turn off my thermostat, and power down everything around the TV except for the DVR. I even unplug the microwave and toaster. The impact has been about a 50% lower energy use during periods that I’m not home.

The same idea holds for the office – people tend to work 8ish hours per day (unless they’re in a startup!) and not on weekends. By powering down for the weekend, we can make a big impact. Now the question is when will we start shutting down our servers when they’re not in use?