Green technology is not just something of the present; it has history and is going to play a big role in the future. “The term ‘technology’ refers to the application of knowledge for practical purposes.” (http://www.green-technology.org, 2010) With that being said, green technology is a method of products designed to protect our environment from toxins. We are living in the age of technology, but we are not living in the environmentally “cleanest” era. In the 21st century we need to look into the future and prepare for a cleaner environment with the impact of human involvement. Past
Although we do not hear a lot about the history of green technology there is a long time line of ideas. For example, since 1000 B.C., Asia and Europe began harnessing and advancing wind energy, developing more efficient and newer windmills. When this idea reached America in the 1850’s it was used to provide fresh water to irrigate the farms and drinking water for the livestock. “During the late 19th century, Charles Brush was able to develop the first wind powered turbine that generated electricity in the United States.” (http://www.cn-friendtech.com, 2010) The United States EPA’s (Environmental Protection Agency) Energy Star Program was one of the most important landmarks in green technology in 1992. Energy Star is a program that segregates computers, monitors, electronics, appliances and other equipment based on their energy efficiency. We now know this as “sleep mode” on our computers. It allows us to set a time if our computer is unattended to go into standby. Another important landmark was the Kyoto Protocol in 1997, aimed at reducing carbon emissions. The landmark in the history of green computing was the adoption of Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) in February 2003. “The RoHS directive restricts the use of lead, mercury, cadmium, hexavalent chromium, polybrominated biphenyls, and polybrominated diphenyl ether in the manufacture of electronic and electrical equipments. The implementation of the RoHS was through the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive (WEEE) of 2005. This directive set targets for collection, recycling, and recovery of electrical goods, aimed at reducing toxic e-waste. These regulations forced manufacturers to use non-hazardous materials in the production of chipsets, processors, and companion chips”. (http://www.brighthub.com, 2010) The history of green technology has brought us where we are today and where we will be in the future. With inventors such as Brush we were able to take his idea and modify it to make it more efficient. That is often times why we don’t hear about such inventions or inventors, because someone has come up with something better, but without people like Brush we would still be at point A. It is important to look back and remember because this is what has led us this far and this is what is going to lead us into the future. Present
Today we have several industries working towards making their products greener. For instance, they are; “cleaning up their products by eliminating hazardous substances, taking back and recycling their products responsibly once they become obsolete, and reducing the climate impacts of their operations and products.” (http://www.greenpeace.org, 2010) The 18 top manufacturers of personal computers, mobile phones, TVs and games consoles were ranked, according to their policies on toxic chemicals, recycling and climate change. This study was done in May 2010; it displays what these big manufacturers are also doing to help the environment. Although we are given special features on our phones, TVs, and computers to help conserve energy, the manufacturers also play a very important role. The manufacturers included in this study are; Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Toshiba, Philips, Apple, LG Electronics, Sony, Motorola, Samsung, Panasonic, HP, Acer, Sharp, Dell, Fujitsu, Lenovo, Microsoft, and Nintendo. All of these companies were...
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