CO2 footprint for desktop and server – life cycle assessment for selected Fujitsu projects
CO2 footprint for three Fujitsu Products
On behalf of Fujitsu, the bifa environmental institute analysed three products from its PC and server range to determine the size of the company's CO2 footprint. This was done within the scope of a complete life cycle assessment to ISO 14040 (LCA). The critical review was carried out by the Fraunhofer Institute IZM. The objective of the project was to identify measures and develop methodologies, in order to be able to provide precise information about the actual emissions values of products.
The project to determine the ecological footprint is part of Fujitsu's green strategy. This is aimed at lowering the CO2 emissions produced during the production and operation of Fujitsu products, and to develop even more environmentally compatible products.
The idea that "green" technology is energy-efficient technology continues to be widespread – including on the manufacturing side. However, this view only takes into account a single aspect of many that play a role in the calculation of the ecological footprint.
The CO2 footprint is generally balanced across the whole life cycle of a product in CO2 equivalents (CO2e).
- raw material production and
- production of the bought-in components,
- use as well as disposal or recycling.
In the case of the ESPRIMO E9900 desktop PC, for example, the corresponding balances for the mouse, keyboard, manual and packaging were also included.
Life cycle of desktop PC and server
The calculation itself was carried out on the basis of a typical life cycle, depending on the product group. The results of the investigation show that, within a life of five years, a desktop PC of the type Fujitsu ESPRIMO E9900 causes 700 kilograms of CO2e if used in Germany with a German energy mix – as much as a 4,400 kilometre long car journey.
The PRIMERGY TX 300 S5 server causes almost 3,800 kilograms of CO2e. In the case of the ESPRIMO-PC, around 50 percent of the CO2 footprint is attributed to the assumed use phase of five years.
Individual parts have a large proportion
The individual parts, i.e. the mainboard, power adapter and other components also account for a large proportion with 40 percent. Chip production is particularly costly in emissions terms: The two 2 GByte memory modules of the ESPRIMO alone cause 70 kilograms CO2e, as much as use of the computer for a year. Until now it has not been possible to compare directly the values for the CO2 footprint of the devices of different manufacturers due to methodological difficulties and a lack of standards. Fujitsu is in contact with partners, suppliers and other players in the market in order to establish and use global standards.
Fujitsu is already able to identify possibilities for reductions on the basis of the results of the bifa analysis:
- Optimisation of the quantity of energy and raw materials used in production and changeover to raw materials with less effect on the environment
- Reduction in transport emissions through increased shift to rail and sea transport
- Further development of the reuse and recycling of devices and components in the Fujitsu recycling centre in Paderborn and worldwide
- Development and provision of more energy-efficient power adapters and products for consumers
- Optimum configuration of the main memory (RAM), graphics and energy options
- Use of energy-efficient IKT products ("Blauer Engel" and "Energy Star")