Vertiv, a global provider of essential digital infrastructure and continuity solutions, has released its Guide to Data Center Sustainability for data center owners and operators looking to lessen the environmental effect of their facilities.
Data centers are responsible for 1% of the world’s electricity demand, according to research by the International Energy Agency. Prior to 2020, the industry was able to reduce the effect of capacity expansion on total energy consumption by increasing operating efficiency.
However, Market Intelligence forecasts a 13% compound annual growth rate in data center development over the next five years as a result of a more than 40% increase in worldwide internet traffic in 2020.
Some operators are looking for new solutions that increase equipment utilisation and eliminate any remaining inefficiencies, phase out water-intensive cooling technologies, and lessen their dependence on carbon-based energy sources as a result of this trend and the increased focus on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and water consumption.
According to TJ Faze, Head of ESG Strategy & Engagement at Vertiv, Operators across the sector are feeling pressure to lessen the environmental effect of their operations, and this new guide is intended to support them in doing so.
The emphasis on operational efficiency has made tremendous advancements possible, but as the industry continues to expand, new tactics and more intelligent technologies are now needed to reduce emissions and water use.
Moreover, according to Vertic, large hyperscale operators have taken the lead in the industry movement and set objectives to achieve carbon neutrality or carbon negative status by the end of this decade. It claims that these operators are leading the way in developing the technology needed to achieve these goals and creating a roadmap for the rest of the industry.
In an effort to meet the market need for data center services that support the environmental objectives of their corporate users, several colocation providers are also switching to carbon-neutral and water-efficient operations. According to Vertiv, in order to achieve these objectives, companies must also consider the impact of their on-premises data centers.
For Jessica Garca, Director of Human Resources for Latin America at Vertiv, they have observed the efforts data center operators have made over the past ten years to lessen the environmental impact of their operations. To reduce resource consumption, new strategies must be developed and implemented, and better systems and technologies must be used, as the industry grows.
“The new Guide to Data Center Sustainability was created to support data center owners and operators willing to make their operations more efficient, with better practices and new developments for this purpose.” said Garca.
This development needs to be seen in the context of increasing ambiguity around measuring sustainability.
In its eleventh annual Global Data centre Survey, Uptime Institute said that the industry is enjoying widespread growth while adapting to increasing complexity and challenges such as evolving efficiency and sustainability requirements, rising outage costs, the ongoing workforce shortage, supply chain interruptions and other issues.
Its research revealed that organisations are not closely tracking their environmental footprint despite the global sustainability push. While most data center owners and operators track Power Usage Efficiency (PUE) and more than 80% measure power consumption rates and effectiveness, many still are not prioritizing vital metrics for improving and reporting sustainability.
Read more at: Insufficient Sustainability Initiatives, Workforce Shortage & Lack of Transparency Ails Data Centre industry: Uptime Report