Sustainability is an important focus not only for the data center industry but for any company. As data center operators recognize the importance of reducing their environmental impact worldwide, some are already finding ways to meet their sustainability goals, and some are just beginning to set goals.
A crucial question to ask is how your data center can help your business to achieve sustainability goals. We took a look at an Uptime Institute report on “Key findings from the Uptime Institute Sustainability and Climate Change Survey “ and listed some of the key findings of the report and discuss reasons how an environmentally focused data center helps you to reduce your carbon footprint and help in achieving your sustainability goals.
Reducing Energy Use
Reducing energy use is a vital sustainability goal for most, if not all, data center operators and their customers. According to the Uptime Institute survey, 50% of respondents reported that reducing energy consumption was their top sustainability goal.
Not only does energy reduction help lessen an organization’s carbon footprint, but it can also lead to significant cost savings in the long run. Reducing energy consumption, though, is easier said than done, so it’s important to partner with a colocation provider that is committed to reducing energy consumption by implementing energy-efficient technologies, redesigning their buildings and training staff on energy-saving practices. For example, Verne Global Finland has its own Solar Power Plant in The Rock data center. Using solar panels, using renewable energy generated from wind turbines and utilizing waste heat recovery methods are other ways we implement energy-saving practices. In addition, the Nordic cool climate naturally reduces the need for energy, e.g. for cooling. Also, energy pricing and consumption is transparent to our customers and our web-based customer dashboard allows customers to monitor their power consumption.
When it comes to energy consumption, it is also important to keep in mind that energy consumption can be impacted by external factors beyond a data center’s control, such as weather changes and energy price fluctuations.
In addition, data center operators can achieve third-party certifications in sustainability. Climate-neutral certification is a rigorous process that verifies an organization’s carbon neutrality and commitment to sustainability. At Verne Global Finland, we are proud to be able to back up our sustainability efforts with firm climate neutral certification proof.
Utilizing Renewable Energy
Another way companies can make progress toward sustainability is by finding a data center that is committed to utilizing renewable energy. According to the Uptime Institute survey, 37% of data center operators reported that procuring renewable energy was their top sustainability goal. Renewable energy sources, such as wind, solar and green hydrogen power is the goal. And the good news is that green energy is becoming increasingly popular among data centers worldwide, with global renewable electricity forecast to rise more than 60% by 2026.
Procuring renewable energy, however, can be a complex process depending on a data center’s location.
The key is finding the right spot to store and manage your data. Finland, for instance, has vast amounts of green energy available, with wind power increasing by 75% last year alone. In fact, Verne Global Finland has employed 100% renewable energy since its inception.
Establishing Alignment on an Effective Sustainability Strategy
A successful sustainability strategy requires a clear understanding of an organization’s environmental impact, a commitment to reducing that impact and a plan for achieving sustainability goals. To ensure you are working toward your sustainability goals as efficiently as possible, it is critical to make sure your data center’s strategy aligns with yours.
Working with a like-minded partner will help your organization advance toward a more sustainable future, so make sure your data center has a comprehensive sustainability strategy and climate-neutral certification plan in place. That plan should consider the complexities of its business operations, stakeholder expectations and regulatory requirements.
According to the Uptime Institute report, the third biggest challenge on sustainability goals was creating a sustainability strategy. To ease this process, we have complied an e-book from our own experience, “A Data Center’s Guide to Sustainability,” which provides an inside look at sustainability strategy and explores the multiple ways data centers can reduce their carbon footprint and gives guidance on how to evaluate data centers on their sustainability.
Connect with Verne Global Finland to Meet Your Sustainability Goals
Verne Global Finland is achieving growth combined with carbon neutral and effective sustainability strategies. It’s validation that sustainability and business can and should go hand in hand. Our sustainability strategies include:
- Certified climate-neutral facilities
- 100% green energy since Day 1
- The company’s own solar power plant
- Heat reuse to the district grid
- The use of our region’s naturally cool Finland air in place of mechanical refrigeration
Overall, there are many ways a data center can help support your sustainability goals. It all starts with shifting your mindset and company focus to be relentlessly committed to reducing your carbon footprint, leveraging renewable energy sources, and taking simple steps, no matter how small, toward building a greener future for the next generation.