Last year Americans purchased more than 31 million new laptop computers. Those laptops will use as much electricity as 140,000 U.S. homes if used for just four hours per day. This week marks the launch of an initiative that aims to reduce the environmental impact of laptop energy consumption with renewable wind energy offsets. Founders Ted Durkee and Brandon Gador have set out to rally the momentum of the green community behind this cause in a unique new way.
"Laptops use a tremendous amount of energy and every year those numbers are growing" said Durkee. "We set out to help curb the environmental impact of that energy use and give people a way to show their support at the same time." [more]
Durkee and Gador have developed a simple but stylish emblem called an 'Energy Seal' that can be stuck to the outside of a laptop to show that its lifetime energy use has been offset with renewable energy from wind turbines.
Gador and Durkee
"When you purchase an Energy Seal," said Gador "your money is paying for wind turbines to produce the amount of energy a typical laptop uses over its lifetime."
Throughout the course of its lifetime a laptop can use as much electricity as the average U.S. home uses in a month. Depending on what state that laptop is used in, that electricity can cause more than 1000 pounds of carbon dioxide and other pollutants to be released into the atmosphere.
"The heart of this initiative is to reduce impact and emissions," said Durkee "but with the Energy Seal we're also extremely excited to give people a way to show their support and let others know they're committed to reducing their environmental footprints."
"It's like a Livestrong bracelet," said Gador "but its for renewable energy instead of cancer research."
Although this week marks the official launch of the Powered Green Laptop Energy Initiative, by word of mouth alone people from across the country have already purchased enough Energy Seals to stop more than 300,000lb of carbon dioxide and other pollutants from reaching the atmosphere.
Durkee is a senior in Mechanical Engineering at The University of Wisconsin-Madison and Gador is a first year graduate The University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Business.
Energy Seals can be purchased for $16 each online at www.poweredgreen.com.