The Next Big Thing: Green Data Centers
The rising demand for digital transformation in today’s business operations has been driving the continued expansion of the global data center market. Expansion might be considered great in a business perspective. However, the more data centers are up and running, the bigger the power they need. As published on Data Center Dynamics, Anders Andrae, a Swedish researcher, predicts that by 2025, data centers will use 20% of the world’s energy, placing their carbon footprint at 5.5% of the global value.
Why green data centers are important
A running data center requires physical space for racks and other equipment which must be lit, cooled, and secured. It also needs multiple sources for power and connectivity as backups to process and store data effectively with minimum downtime. Adding to that, since a data center requires continuous uptime, many systems run around the clock, regardless of whether they’re being used or not. This means that there is a demand for large amounts of energy for a data center to operate 24/7, along with running fans, monitors, lights, and various systems. With thousands of data centers fully functional all over the world and the possibility of a rapid expansion, efforts to decrease power consumption and carbon emissions, as well as promote sustainable operations are no longer optional.
How to reduce the environmental impact of data centers
There are various ways for data centers to minimize their energy consumption and reduce their environmental impact.
Using power as needed
Through continuous monitoring and analysis, data centers can create systems and deploy tools for them to only use the amount of power needed and eliminate any excess of power spending.
Older pieces of equipment, especially as they degrade over time, consume more energy compared to their newer upgraded — and more energy-efficient — versions. For a data center, updating equipment is essential.
Turning off unused or dead servers
A data center provider usually provides additional space for each client in case of expansion. Until that expansion occurs, this space contains dead servers which draw power without doing any useful work. Turning off these dead servers significantly reduces energy consumption.
Opting for virtualization
Through virtualization, the need for manual control decreases. Since employees aren’t needed permanently on site, things like temperature and lighting don’t need much maintenance, and data centers can function at higher temperatures with a reduced energy footprint.
Innovating cooling management system
The equipment in a data center cooling management system draws a large amount of energy to operate. Bigger data centers with enough resources should invest in more power-efficient cooling methods.
Data centers may implement recycling strategies to be more environmentally friendly. For example, the Google data center in Finland recycles 100% of the electronics they replace, and the Citi data center in Germany utilises a reverse osmosis strategy to recycle about 13 million gallons of water every year.
The ECO concept of neuCentrIX
Businesses nowadays are more aware of worldwide energy needs and their own carbon footprints. In some countries, companies might even receive tax benefits for implementing green initiatives. For these environmentally conscious businesses, sustainability is one of the most important criteria for choosing a data center provider.
neuCentrIX has long recognized the demand for sustainable data centers and incorporated green strategies in its development plan. neuCentrIX is currently building a hyperscale data center with a concept of ECO (Evolve, Connected, and Origin). This hyperscale data center will be the first green data center which uses wicker (a specific type of material resulting from a technique of weaving plant-based materials such as rattan and bamboo) and proves neuCentrIX’s commitment and efforts in promoting sustainability.