Over the last couple of years, we’ve seen a lot of news about European data centers. Some of it has been good and some not so good. But there’s one thing that’s been clear: we need to make a change.
Data centers consume a lot of energy, and water, and create waste; they are big consumers of energy, a finite resource; they consume water, and they create waste that needs to be disposed of in a responsible manner.
Fortunately, things are changing for the better. Many attempts have been made to address these issues over the last few years, but it’s clear that more needs to be done. Experts are looking into how the data center can work more efficiently
European Data Center Starts To Be Greener From Now
Data centers are massive energy consumers, and the European Commission wants them to become greener from now. This is why it has drafted a proposal on data center energy consumption that aims to cut down on the energy used by these facilities by 20% over the next three years.
The proposal will force data centers to be more efficient in their use of electricity and make sure they do not waste any energy.
The commission has suggested that companies must submit an annual report showing how much energy their data centers use, as well as how much they have saved from reducing their carbon footprint over the previous year. If companies fail to do this, they could face fines up to €30,000 per day.
As the world’s leading data center location, Europe has been a hot topic in recent years. In addition to being the birthplace of many leading technology companies and innovation centers, it also boasts the world’s most advanced data center infrastructure. The EU is currently building its own infrastructure so that it can compete with the US, China, and Japan in terms of scale and speed.
Gartner Inc. reports that Europe is currently ranked second in terms of global spending on information technology (IT) services and hardware supply, accounting for 13% of total worldwide spending in 2018.
The German and UK successes with renewable energy show a clear path for other countries to follow. Norway, for example, lags behind due to its refusal to tax greenhouse gasses.
The Norwegians could benefit from the more progressive strategies of their neighbors in Germany and the UK if they were willing to engage in an equal effort towards clean energy.
Overcoming Carbon Emission and Increasing Efficiency
There is a growing demand for data center infrastructure to meet the insatiable need for more computing power. As the number of devices connected to the internet continues to grow, the demand for data center space and resources will continue to increase.
As a result, the energy consumption of data centers has risen from 1% of global energy consumption in 2000 to 2% today. The good news is that there are ways to reduce carbon emissions while increasing efficiency.
Use Renewable Energy Sources
The most popular way to reduce your carbon footprint right now is by using renewable energy
sources instead of fossil fuels.
Solar panels can be an excellent option for generating electricity for your facility, but they do require direct sunlight. If you don’t have enough sun in your area or want an alternative source, wind turbines may be a better choice for you.
Reducing power usage through improved cooling systems
Cooling accounts for approximately 60 percent of energy use in a typical data center. To reduce energy costs, companies are looking at new technologies to better manage cooling needs and reduce operational cos.
For example, some companies are using water-based cooling systems rather than air-based systems because they require less energy to operate and have lower maintenance costs.
Furthermore, they can upgrade their server farm’s cooling systems to be more eco-friendly – using seawater where they can, instead of freshwater.
And while water usage is negligible on a person-to-person scale, it means a lot when considering the needs of millions of users across Europe.
Optimizing power distribution
Power distribution in data centers is one of the most important aspects of the design and construction processes.
The power distribution infrastructure must provide reliable, scalable, and redundant power for all critical IT equipment in a data center. It also needs to be able to handle a multitude of load requirements, which can vary significantly from month to month.
In most cases, power distribution accounts for about 25 percent of overall data center energy consumption.
By optimizing power distribution systems and using higher-efficiency components such as uninterruptible power supplies (UPS), companies can reduce their overall electricity bill by up to 30 percent without compromising uptime or performance for IT equipment or end users.
The European Data Centre should be a pioneer in developing green technology and methods to reduce its carbon footprint, considering the fact that all its servers are on 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
In tier 3 – 4 data center, which has the lowest energy cost for electric power and cloud computing system, total on average the annual carbon emission of this data center is 1,728.6 tons.
If implement activities such as the elimination of duplicate power supplies to save power and achieve an energy saving rate of 20%， the annual reduction of carbon emission will reach 397.2 tons.
To sum up, we can find that the utilization of low energy cost technology in the data center can greatly decrease the economic cost and environmental pollution.
It is clear that European data centers have the opportunity to improve their carbon footprint and decrease operating costs by choosing a green data center.
Unfortunately, renewable energy innovations have not yet been implemented at scale. So data centers in Europe still depend on natural gas and nuclear.
Another option is to relocate the data center to a country that has abundant natural gas and hydrothermal sources, such as Indonesia. You can read about Green Data Center Investment Case Study to figure out of it.
The European data center market is growing fast and can be a lucrative option for businesses looking to expand. Wherever you decide to locate your data center, always consider the environmental impact you are making by using certain natural resources.