Computer Energy Waste a Major Cause of Pollution

Computers and computer monitors in the United States are responsible for the unnecessary production of millions of tons of greenhouse gases every year, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. In U.S. companies alone, more than $1 billion a year is wasted on electricity for computer monitors that are turned on when they shouldn't be.

Energy-Saving Tips

• Turn off your computer and monitor when not in use for more than an hour.

• Screen savers do not save electricity. Free software provided by the EPA automatically puts monitors into energy-saving "sleep mode" when not in use.

• When purchasing new or replacement computers, consider buying efficient flat screens and laptops bearing the 'Energy Star' label.

EPA officials say emissions could be drastically reduced if companies and individual computer users would follow a few energy-saving guidelines. NPR's Chris Arnold reports.

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