August 26, 2008
| by Steven Castle
Home networking manufacturer Linksys has made an effort to go green, both with more energy-efficient products and better eco-friendly packaging.
The company says is now has 30 home networking products that use Energy Star-certified power adapters. Also known as bricks, wall warts, or transformers, power adapters convert the AC power from your home’s power outlet to DC power that sensitive electronics can handle—and until recently power adapters have been very inefficient. In some older power adapters, as much as 70 percent of electricity can be wasted by the adapter and dissipated by heat. Newer Energy-Star rated power adapters raise efficiencies up to 84 percent.
Linksys says the energy consumed by its new power adapters has been cut almost in half. “[The power adapter of the WRT54G router] used 4.6 watts of power, and a new router with one of the Energy Star-certified power adapters can use as little as 2.6 watts of power,” says the company. The Energy Star-rated power adapters are available on the Wireless-G and –N routers and on some gateways, switches and access points.
Linksys has also begun rolling out eco-friendly packaging that it says results in more than a 40 percent reduction in waste materials, compared to the previous packaging.
The new packaging features a smaller box, no outer “sleeve” as with previous Linksys packaging, recycled and biodegradable packing materials, documents printed on recycled paper with eco-friendly ink (vegetable and soy), and limited use of plastic bags. Linksys says the reduced packaging is equal to saving 790 acres of pine or fir forest trees or taking 3,000 cars off the road per year.
The eco-friendly packaging will be available this month on the Wireless-N line of routers: WRT310N Gigabit Route, WRT160N Ulta RangePlus Broadband router WRT610N Simultaneous Dual-N Band router, WRT110 RangePlus router, WRT54GS Wireless-G router with SpeedBooster. These products also come with Energy Star-certified power adapters.
The new green packaging will be extended to other products by the end of the year.
Steven Castle is Electronic House's managing editor. he has been writing about consumer electronics, homes and energy efficiency topics for two decades. He is also the co-founder of GreenTech Advocates