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HomeSunset Host CoTo decarbonize data canters, it’s time to learn from ‘eco-…

To decarbonize data canters, it’s time to learn from ‘eco-…


Leading climate scientists continue to raise the alarm over our planet’s raising temperatures, now warning we are on a trajectory to miss the 1.5C target that is imperative to limit the worst effects of climate change. In response, businesses and policymakers alike are rallying. In the EU, the recent European Green Deal hopes to catalyze the transition to a climate neutral society. In the UK, the Government is following a 10-point plan to achieve net-zero by 2050. Meanwhile, businesses everywhere are dialing up their sustainability measures in a bid to turn climate pledges into climate action. And yet, as businesses and governments scrutinize their carbon footprint closer than ever, one quiet contributor to global carbon emissions is often overlooked.

Data infrastructure currently sits in a blind spot. There was no mention of it, for example, in the recent United Nations Climate Change Conference summit agendas. But every day we consume, store, process and move ever-larger quantities of data. In fact, total worldwide data creation has more than doubled between 2019 and 2022, from 41 zettabytes to 97. This figure is expected to double again in the next three years, until it reaches a staggering 181 zettabytes. Data centers are at the heart of this system, consuming about 3% of global energy supplies each year – about twice as much as in the decade prior. As emerging technologies like AI, machine learning, and the metaverse continue to grow in scale and complexity, our data centers will need to accommodate even larger workloads, which in turn will ramp up energy usage and carbon emissions if left unchecked. For some, it’s happening already.

Marco Mancuso

Marco Mancuso is the EMEA Head of Strategic Collaborations at Hitachi Vantara.

Decarbonizing data centers – the race is on

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