Following the Queen’s speech yesterday, IT managers will be watching closely to see what the Government’s tough environmental stance means to them.

"My government will publish a bill on climate change as part of its policy to protect the environment, consistent with the need to secure long-term energy supplies," said the Queen in her opening speech for this session of Parliament.

At the eighth worst carbon-emission offender, businesses are expected to be hit despite a lack of firm plans on what any legislation will entail. It has committed to a target of reducing carbon emissions by 20% by 2010.

Analyst firm Gartner recently urged the IT industry to take stock. “Financial and environmental pressures, compounded by legislative changes and increasing consumer awareness, are combining to force IT vendors and chief information officers (CIOs) to take a closer look at the impact ‘green’ will have on their business,” said Steve Prentice, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner.

“The IT industry must now look beyond the current power issue and pay greater attention to broader issues, such as limiting carbon and greenhouse gas emissions, using materials from renewable resources, recycling materials and reusing heat from data centers.”

For CIOs, Gartner said this means taking a fresh look at lifecycle management within the organisation to identify opportunities to minimise the impact of IT on the environment, at the same time as meeting business objectives.

While large global IT vendors are now well prepared for upcoming legislation, Gartner said they were forced to the table and it is the first time that legislation is leading technology development.