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New Poll Reveals 73 Percent of U.S. Workers Want Employers To Be Environmentally Responsible But Lag In Their Own Efforts To Help


A new poll commissioned by Sun Microsystems, Inc. (Nasdaq: SUNW) and conducted by Harris Interactive shows that while U.S. workers want to work for socially and environmentally responsible companies, many are not doing simple things to help their employers conserve energy, such as turning off lights and computers when they are done using them. The study also found that employees are using some energy-saving measures at home but are not taking those same good habits to work with them. If the percentage of America’s 81.1 million office workers who are not turning off lights and computers at work took their energy-conscious behaviors to work with them, Sun estimates that those workers could achieve the equivalent of taking 6.1 million cars off the road in aggregate CO2 emissions.

Conducted in June, the survey polled 1,741 U.S. employees ages 18-54 who work for companies of 25 employees or more. Nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of workers said they strongly or somewhat agree that it is important to them that their employer is an environmentally and socially responsible company. However, only 52 percent of workers are turning off the light when they leave a room at work. When asked what they do at home, 92 percent said they do in fact turn off the lights in their residence. When asked about computers, 58 percent said they turn off computers at home when they are done using them compared to a mere 34 percent at work. Another key finding was that 57 percent of workers are using “sleep” mode for their home computers so that the system will go into an energy saving hibernation state if not touched for a set amount of time. Only 44 percent said they use sleep mode for their computers in the office.

“Businesses don’t cut power consumption -- people do,” said Dave Douglas, Vice President of Eco Responsibility at Sun Microsystems. “If you’re an employee, these survey results show that you have an enormous opportunity to make a difference for our planet and to help America’s business make better use of their economic resources. If you’re an employer, bridge this gap by communicating about the issue and how everyone can benefit by taking small steps. The good news is that your employees care about the environment, but they may need your help in realizing how much they can actually make a difference.”

“More than twice as much electricity is consumed by California businesses and industries than is consumed by the residential sector,” said Wally McGuire, Director of Flex Your Power, an agency established by the State of California to educate consumers and businesses about energy efficiency. “Many employees forget how much they can do to reduce their energy consumption at work. If we all take even small steps, we can reduce the emission of global warming gases significantly and prevent power shortages during the hot summer months when electricity usage is high due to air conditioners.”

As part of its ongoing Eco Responsibility Initiative, Sun has been trimming its carbon footprint through numerous projects and award winning programs over the past several years. Sun estimates that 90 percent of its greenhouse gas emissions are the result of its electricity use and has publicly committed to reducing its carbon footprint by 20% over 2002 levels by 2012.

For Sun’s tips on how to keep your company cool this summer and cut your energy consumption year round, please visit:

About Eco Responsibility at Sun

Sun’s Eco Responsibility Initiative is guided by three principles: Innovate, Act and Share. Sun innovates by making products and services that are both good for the environment and good for business. Sun acts by operating in an open, eco-conscious way. Sun shares by making information and technology available to others so that we can all move forward and participate in an increasingly sustainable way. One of Sun’s eco innovations is the Sun Fire/Sparc technology Enterprise T1000/T2000 server, which is three to five times more energy efficient than its nearest competitor and was the first server for which PG&E offered a rebate. Sun also takes responsibility for its products through end of life with its Global Takeback Program, which has allowed 95% of returned products to be recycled or reused. Sun is greening its own operations through programs like Open Work, which saves our environment 30,000 metric tons a year by allowing employees to work from home or in a flexible office. For more information on Sun’s Eco Responsibility Initiative, please visit

About Sun Microsystems, Inc.
A singular vision -- “The Network Is The Computer” -- guides Sun in the development of technologies that power the world’s most important markets. Sun’s philosophy of sharing innovation and building communities is at the forefront of the next wave of computing: the Participation Age. Sun can be found in more than 100 countries and on the Web at

Sun, Sun Microsystems, the Sun logo, The Networks Is The Computer, and Sun Fire are trademarks of Sun Microsystems Inc. in the United States and other countries.

All SPARC trademarks are used under license and are trademarks or registered trademarks of SPARC International, Inc. in the US and other countries. Products bearing SPARC trademarks are based upon an architecture developed by Sun Microsystems, Inc.

*Both calculations in sub-headline based on U.S. Department of Labor’s June 2007 Total U.S. Workforce count of 146.14 million. Of that 146.14 million total workers, the Department estimates that 55 percent work with computers, thus yielding a base number for this calculation of 81.1 million workers.

About the survey:
Online survey conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of Sun Microsystems Inc. between June 21 and June 25, 2007 among 3,221 U.S. Adults 18+ of which 1,741 are employed full time and/or part time at a company with 25+ employees. Sampling error is ± 4 percentage points. This online survey is not based on a probability sample. The full methodology and survey data is available upon request.


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