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Data Centers Use Renewable Energy to Contain Costs

 
 
By Dennis McCafferty  |  Posted 12-16-2014 Email
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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    Robust Outlook
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    Robust Outlook

    86% of survey respondents predicted that the current state of strong data center growth will last more than five years, with one in five saying it will last for at least another two decades.
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    Expansion Plans
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    Expansion Plans

    51% of data center owners have increased data center capacity within the last five years, and nearly seven out of ten expect to do so over the next five years.
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    Drivers of Data Center Growth
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    Drivers of Data Center Growth

    Cloud-based services and apps: 41%, The overall digitization of information: 36%, Devices such as smartphones and tablets: 25%
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    Data Center Disruptor
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    Data Center Disruptor

    More than half of survey respondents believe the industry will see a tech game-changer in the very near future.
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    Promising New Data Center Technologies
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    Promising New Data Center Technologies

    Data center information management: 13%, Immersion/liquid cooling: 13%, Containment: 11%, Modular/containerized construction: 10%
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    Factors in Data Center Location
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    Factors in Data Center Location

    Operating expenses, including power/cooling costs: 32%, Proximity to existing operations/headquarters: 29%, Proximity to fiber: 11%, Quality of life: 10%, Caliber of work force: 9%
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    Wishful Thinking?
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    Wishful Thinking?

    19% of owners said that if they could change one thing about their data centers, it would be to make them more energy-efficient, and 15% would want a better cooling/HVAC system.
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    Going Green
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    Going Green

    57% of the respondents either currently operate a LEED-certified data center to lower energy usage, or anticipate seeking LEED certification on their next project.
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    Conservative Estimate
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    Conservative Estimate

    47% believe that data center efficiency levels will average 1.3 PUE (power usage effectiveness) or lower within the next five years, compared to the 1.7 PUE industry average as of June 2014.
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    Recycling Initiative
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    Recycling Initiative

    84% of data center owners feel there is either definitely or probably a need to consider renewable forms of energy to manage future data center requirements.
 

While growth in data demand is expected to last for the indefinite future, the use of energy to power data centers is expected to sharply decline, according to a recent survey from Mortenson. Data center owners will continue to increase capacity to accommodate cloud innovation, mobility, and the digitalization of any and all information. To contain costs and respond to concerns about environmental impact, data center operators, CIOs and other tech influencers are carefully considering renewable forms of energy. "Worldwide data usage continues to grow, [and that] requires more infrastructure and power to support it," says Scott Ganske, director of operations for the mission-critical group at Mortenson, a construction company that builds data centers. "It's vital that we leverage innovation to help balance energy demand and supply. There are a number of promising technologies that will drive energy efficiency forward in the next few years, and renewable energy increasingly makes economic [and] environmental sense for the energy supply chain." More than 220 data center executives, developers and operators, as well as IT leaders and professionals, took part in the research.

 
 
 
 
 
Dennis McCafferty is a freelance writer for Baseline Magazine.

 
 
 
 
 
 

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