As part of its offensive to go “green,” Lenovo is rolling out a series of new monitors designed to meet tougher environmental standards ranging from power consumption to use of recycled materials.

The ThinkVision L193p monitor is the first to reach a “gold” rating for a series of power and environmental standards known as EPEAT, according to Lenovo. The 19-inch screen monitor was rated by the Green Electronics Council, which is based in Oregon.

The new monitor follows the release of a low-cost ThinkCenter A61e personal computer that weighs 8 pounds and uses less power. Combined the L193p monitor and the A61e would use more than 50 percent less power than a conventional PC and standard monitor, Lenovo said.

In April, Greenpeace ranked Lenovo best in its “Toxic Tech” rankings of “Guide to Greener Technologies.” Lenovo ranked last in the first guide that the global environmental organization published in August of 2006.

According to the Green Electronics Council, numerous criteria must be met to receive its endorsement. Requirements are designed to reduce PCs and devices that:

a. Are very resource intensive to manufacture
b. Contain significant amounts of toxic and environmentally sensitive materials
c. Use electricity inefficiently
d. Have a relatively short useable lifespan
e. Are inefficiently and/or ineffectively recovered and recycled

“With the first PC monitor rated EPEAT Gold, Lenovo has achieved a milestone in the greening of the electronics industry,” said Jeff Omelchuck, executive director of the Green Electronics Council, in a statement released through Lenovo. “The EPEAT system helps purchasers evaluate, compare and select PC products based on their environmental attributes. By developing a monitor that achieves EPEAT’s Gold ranking Lenovo is demonstrating its commitment to providing purchasers with high quality, environmentally responsible products.”

EPEAT stands for Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool.
For example, the Lenovo monitor uses more than 25 percent of recycle content in its plastic parts.

Lenovo has more than 40 products that have been measured by the EPEAT system, and Jim Christensen, director of desktop and visuals marketing for Lenovo, said the company’s goal is to achieve “gold” status for all its monitors. The four other models in the new series received silver ratings.

One of the new monitors, the L190x, has a slim enough frame that two of them can be paired side by side for a much larger screen than a 27-inch monitor and do so at a lower cost, Lenovo noted.

Earlier this year, Lenovo introduced a 22-inch monitor.

Prices for the new monitors range from $199 to $379.

(Editor’s note: This story has been updated to clarify that EPEAT standards are designed to reduce numerous factors in PCs and other devices such as power use.)