Climate Neutral Data Centre – Information on a symbolized sustainable energy to building data center infrastructure. Today, having a company with a sustainable attitude is considered a valuable feature. It’s currently one of the most important things that people consider when choosing which company to work with.
In this article, we’ll discuss this topic the best practices, and its challenges. Read on and find out all the ways of making your Data Centre more eco-friendly.
Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact
Before getting into the practices and challenges of the Climate Neutral Data Centre, let us briefly introduce the “Climate Neutral Data Centre Agreement.” Industry participants and the trade association of Europe’s cloud infrastructure services and data centers pledge to acquire climate neutrality by 2030.
The European Commission and Frans Timmermans, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission, support the European Green Deal. The European Green Deal expects Europe to be climate neutral by 2050. Following are the targets of the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact:
- Prove energy efficiency with measurable targets
- Purchase 100% carbon-free energy
- Water conservation
- Reuse, repair, and recycle servers
- Look for ways to recycle heat
Concept of Data Centres
Online access has become rooted in our daily lives for many of us. Covid-19 has shifted us towards the digital lifestyle of working, studying, connecting with loved ones, and relaxing. The “new norm” looks will likely stay for the upcoming years.
Higher Internet traffic has undoubtedly resulted in higher demand for data centers. Consider the daily usage of video calls, streaming services, and multiple messaging applications while working from home.
You must not be surprised to discover that some 1.7MB of data was created every second by every individual during 2020 and that a massive 90% of the global data originated in the last two years alone. Can you imagine the energy needed to capture and manage the deluge of data we’re generating and utilizing in our business dealings & private dealings?
As the Internet’s backbone, Data Centres store, move, process, and analyze the data needed to operate any online service. A data center also provides an energy-guzzling facility: nearly 40% of the energy goes to its cooling systems to provide a temperature-controlled environment round the clock. Estimates further suggest that data centers clean up to 5% of global greenhouse gas emissions.
Practices for Climate Neutral Data Centres
Most businesses desire their buildings, even data centers’ carbon footprint, to be “net zero” by 2050, which means they originate all energy from renewable sources with zero addition of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. Achieving net zero demands a three-pronged data center design approach: energy conservation, energy efficiency & renewable, preferably on-site energy sources.
Now, as more authorities seek to design their data centers or redesign and upgrade them for environmental sustainability than ever before, consider how to move your solution toward net zero. It could lead to long-term savings, as well as contribute to the improved health of the planet. Here are the targets for European Green Deal under the “Climate Neutral Data Centre Agreement.”
A medium-sized data center (15 MW like the ones we have in Italy) can utilize as much water as three small hospitals or two 18-hole golf courses. A study in 2021 reveals that US data centers consume approximately 1.7 billion liters of water daily, that is, 0.001% of that country’s daily consumption.
In the European Green Deal, the “Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact” expects that by 2025, all new Data Centres above 50 kW must have a minimum PUE of 1.4. By 2030, the already operative Data Centres will have to reach the same value. In 2025, the aim is also to supply 70% of renewable energy sources and achieve 100% by 2030.
We can also find much more efficient computer processing hardware, UPS systems, and cooling equipment. “Energy Star” rated servers significantly improve energy efficiency, especially when IT hardware runs close to maximum consumption.
You can also close unused servers, replace older hardware with high-efficiency equipment & make full utilization of energy efficiency features to help lessen idle state power consumption. Consolidation and virtualization also upgrade hardware efficiency. Consider executing high-efficiency power, reducing data center carbon footprint, and cooling infrastructure in your data center.
It includes transformer-less, modular UPSes run at high capacity, higher voltage equipment operation, close coupled in-row or overhead cooling, aisle containment, liquid-cooled rear door heat exchangers, complete liquid immersion cooling, and direct liquid-to-chip cooling.
Depending on your steps to achieve energy conservation and efficiency, the remaining challenge is transitioning to clean, renewable energy. Even the best data centers use much power, and attempts at running large data centers on 100% solar have failed. The number of solar panels required takes too much space. In their site selection criteria, operators of extensive facilities have advantages smaller data centers can’t match, such as hydro or wind power.
Consider implementing fuel cells for on-site generation, mainly when you can use methane from landfills. It enables you to use non-fossil fuels, eliminates extended transmission losses, and helps you reclaim the substantial heat produced by these devices. However, cells aren’t perfect. They still make a carbon footprint, but it’s a smaller footprint than oil or coal power generation produces.
Challenges to Sustainability of Climate Neutral Data Centre
- A report investigates the influence of Data Centres on power infrastructure in the key metros and developments in sustainability, including the consumption of renewable power and, the effect of technology & the requirements needed to meet net zero.
- The report includes the analyses of 20 key Metro City Markets in Europe and Asia, such as Amsterdam, Beijing, Berlin, Dublin, Frankfurt, Jakarta, Johannesburg, Kuala Lumpur, London & Slough, Madrid, Marseille, Milan, Osaka, Paris, Shanghai, Singapore, Stockholm, Sydney & Tokyo.
- Within the Data Centre service, power density has increased with time. DCP figured out that Europe’s average power density IT load has accelerated from 1.3 kW per m2 of utilized space (in mid-2016) to 1.6 kW per m2 over the five years to mid-2021. The change in Hyperscale computing requirements and the increase in cloud services have increased average power density growth. However, pure Hyperscale facilities have a higher power density level with 2 kW and above per m2.
- The power density average increases as Data Centre services become more efficient and replace older stock.
- The report provides a 4-year Data Centre Power forecast for key metro city markets in Europe and Asia.
Sustainability issues and cooling and heat management technology advances have shifted how data centers get designed, managed, & maintained.
We see some headways in that direction, which should be the way forward. Otherwise, we’ll sacrifice our upcoming years to fulfill our insatiable data consumption and connectivity needs.