Sustainability is a core operating principle for businesses, and it’s driving policies to lower carbon emissions. We asked NEXTDC CEO, Craig Scroggie, how organisations can make rapid progress towards a carbon neutral data centre.

“The progress towards having carbon neutral is critically important but it’s not just the operation of IT infrastructure. Many of the physical processes of going into the building and constructing and data centres, the use of concrete and other things contribute to carbon footprint.”

He said, “It is critically important that we look at all aspects of an environmental footprint, Not just the actual power use and efficiency, but the materials that we use in that sense, the recycling approach that we take to not only waste energy from the data centre, but the recycling of our customers equipment, over time.”

As Which-50 has reported in the past, the growth in data centres around the world has brought the issues of digital transformation and energy consumption together. Projections out of Schneider Electric, for instance, suggest that at the current pace the energy consumption by data centres will double by 2025 — driven in part by new approaches to data processing such as edge computing.

There is no specific agreement about how much of the world’s energy data centres currently consume, but there is general agreement that it is between one to two per cent. However one point which all the major market participants agree is that the number will double before the end of the decade.

Already, it is estimated that data centres’ emissions are on par with the aviation industry and the global shipping industry.

The pandemic inspired digital acceleration, along with the expanding industrial internet underpinned by IOT technology, the rapid advance of automation and AI, and the shift to edge computing.

This minicast was produced for NEXTDC by Which-50’s Digital Intelligence Unit. Fees apply.

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