I came across this article tonight over at InfoWorld and I like the way it is written. Most of what is pointed out in the article fit my criteria of Simple. Easy. Works.
Turn off machines that aren't being used.
A monitor in low power state over night still burns more energy than a monitor that is off all night.
Simple things like that will save a lot of money. I bet IT guys turn off the lights at night when they are at home so why not do the same at work?
But it was this item in particular though is what caught my eye.
"Myth No. 10: You're bound to save money by rushing out and buying the most energy-efficient equipment as soon as possible.
Fact: Savings realized by more efficient equipment have to be balanced against the cost of running the existing equipment. Replacing $5,000 servers before their end of life to save $30 per year in power is not going to save money.
Instead, look for ways to implement energy-saving strategies that don't require new equipment or user buy-in. For example, applying a policy through Active Directory to shut down systems that aren't in use after business hours doesn't require buying new equipment and will save a lot of money. If you can get user buy-in, other actions such as powering off monitors, PCs, printers, and the like will save lots of power without buying anything. "
I am researching some examples of the item highlighted in blue. I hope to come up with some Powershell examples as well as some Group Policy based solutions.