Colocation reduces the environmental footprint of your IT

30 January 2020
Improve your sustainability performance by colocating your IT
Colocation reduces the environmental footprint of your IT

It's becoming clear that we, as individuals and professionals, must take proactive steps to mitigate the negative effects that many of our activities and industries have on our planet. From an IT perspective, it’s important to remember that as the amount of data we produce increases, so does the amount of energy needed to store, move, and access that data.

If you don't act, your customers will
A commitment to sustainability is no longer a nice-to-have for companies, it’s a business imperative in order to attract customers and employees. In a recent study, 60% of consumers say they are likely to switch to a brand that is more environmentally friendly than their current brand.

If you want to be relevant to your customers and attract the best talent, you have to put environmental aspects at the forefront of your decisions.

Don't let your data centre cause trouble
The data centre stands for a high portion of the total IT used in most organisations, and it devours energy. This means that choosing the right data centre makes a difference to your brand, especially from a sustainability perspective.

It is difficult for most organisations to keep an in-house data centre up to date with the latest energy efficient solutions. The cooling infrastructure is expensive and continuous energy trimming requires competence and dedication. Cloud migration can increase the challenge further – as decreased workloads in the existing in-house data centre usually leads to lower energy efficiency, resulting in higher energy consumption and environmental cost.

The more the merrier
With colocation you get high energy efficiency, making significant savings on power consumption just by moving your current equipment into the right facility. Choose a data centre with modern cooling equipment run by a team with proven dedication to continuous improvements. As the infrastructure is shared with other customers, the savings increase further.

A colocation provider committed to sustainability will also use only renewable energy sources and develop ways to further reduce the environmental impact, such as algorithmic solutions to optimise the performance of the cooling system and heat recovery.

PUE is key
Data centre energy efficiency is usually measured in PUE (power usage effectiveness). It is calculated by dividing the amount of power entering a data centre by the power used to run the infrastructure within it. The lower the figure the better.

The average data centre PUE today is around 1.67 (according to the Uptime Institute) but you can find colocation data centres running at 1.2. Another way of putting it is that by placing your servers in an energy efficient data centre, you cut your data centre energy bill with almost 30% compared to the average data centre. 30% is a nice saving. Compared to an old in-house data centre, the saving is often even higher. 

Win-win on sustainability
With well-chosen colocation you can improve your sustainability performance and reduce your environmental footprint:

  • a high level of energy efficiency, with savings of 30% or more
  • renewable energy  
  • waste heat recovery

It does not only make sense - it is also important for your colleagues and customers.

Read more about our innovative sustainability projects and colocation offering.

Footnote by Rickard Hilmersson - These are my thoughts on sustainability, a topic very close to mine and DigiPlex’s heart. This is the final blog post in this current series on the benefits of colocation. Read the others here.

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