How to Reduce Data Center Carbon Footprints

With more and more businesses going online, servers and data centers are becoming one of the most valued assets in an organization. The demand for data and bandwidth is continually growing, which is contributing to the global energy consumption. According to Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), data centers used 91 billion kilowatt hours (kWh) electrical energy in 2013, accounting for 3% of global electricity consumption. Data centers are now on the radar of environmental groups for their carbon emissions, which accounts to 200 million metric tons of carbon dioxide in a year.

According to the new research, big data centers can cut their carbon emissions by 80% by efficient management of off-shelf equipment and energy management. We have provided simple steps to help data centers efficiently cut down their carbon emissions.

Start With Analyzing Assets, Their Performances and Power Usage Trends
The first step towards efficient power management is taking inventory of all IT assets. It will help to understand current usage patterns across various equipments. Cooling and electricity are the two major contributors of energy consumption in the data center and once established, data centers can identify inefficient areas, which needs to be reconfigured, upgraded and removed.

Involve DCIM Tools
Many data centers are considering non-disruptive power management tools for trend analysis. Data Center Infrastructure Management Tools (DCIM) can help data centers improve energy efficiency by analyzing data center design, system management functions, asset discovery, energy management and capacity planning.

Natural Cooling
Cooling is a major requirement in data centers and can contribute to the high power consumption. Data centers can cut down on their cooling charges by relying on free cooling techniques, such as using outside air and water in comparison to air conditioning and powered refrigeration. Solar panels, temperature controls, and wind energy panels can help data center managers save on electricity costs.

Mitigating Server Inefficiencies
Today, there is a high strain on servers to ensure data availability. However, NRDC suggests that 30% of these “Zombie servers” are running without a reason and are using just 10-15% of their capacity.

Many big data centers have already taken major steps to reduce this inefficiency by adopting server virtualization, consolidation and better software controls, thereby reducing carbon emissions by 80%.

If you believe that it is difficult to cut down your power usage and carbon footprints by above mentioned steps, perhaps you should seek the services of SAS70 compliant, Lifeline Data Centers.

Over the years, Lifeline Data Centers have helped many data centers cut down on their power usage and carbon emissions by guiding them through various aspects of efficient data center management. Schedule a tour with us today to see our energy-efficient operations.

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Rich Banta

Rich Banta

Managing Member at Lifeline Data Centers
Rich is responsible for Compliance and Certifications, Data Center Operations, Information Technology, and Client Concierge Services. Rich has an extensive background in server and network management, large scale wide-area networks, storage, business continuity, and monitoring. Rich is a former CTO of a major health care system. Rich is hands-on every day in the data centers. He also holds many certifications, including: CISA – Certified Information Systems Auditor CRISC – Certified in Risk & Information Systems Management CDCE – Certified Data Center Expert CDCDP – Certified Data Center Design Professional
Rich Banta