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Sarah UKFast | Account Manager

Environmental Innovation – PR Tool or Green Philanthropy?

22 October 2010 by Mother Superior

This week marks a momentous occasion for us with the launch of UKFast Energy’s three step plan that sees in-house generation of clean energy through the production of hydro-power plants in Wales and Scotland.

Our three step plan consists of:

  • Beginning work on a 10 Hydro electric power plants
  • Becoming 100% carbon neutral both at our offices and data centres and the first hosting provider to achieve PAS 2060 certification
  • Opening our new green data centre in 2011 filled with energy saving technologies

At UKFast we’ve taken green initiatives into our own hands and it’s been an eye opener to see that people disregard the importance of saving our planets resources, mainly because continual ‘green’ efforts often bring little material reward and immediate gain.

We’re not the only go getting green IT ambassadors that believes this attitude is weighing down on industries and allows people to pass the blame or worse, wait until it becomes a craze and the ‘in’ thing to do.

Over the past few weeks it’s great to see many companies across the globe revealing their plans for a sustainable future. This is a cause that we have been passionate about for some time, which is evident in our most recent carbon neutral schemes and the implementation of our green data centre. With the use of a free cooling system, using external air to for cooling instead of air conditioning, we will significantly reduce the amount of energy needed to run the facility.

Currently, air conditioning accounts for third to a half of the total energy consumption of a data centre. It’s a very positive step to see that internet leaders Facebook and eBay are also following suit by reducing their data centre emissions, largely through better air flow management too. One of the projects at eBay’s data centre has already reduced carbon emissions by 16 per cent which makes a significant difference.

Google recently made a series of investments outside its core Internet-search business. In a move that could eliminate “a major barrier to scaling up offshore wind” and “help lessen the load on the Northeast USA power grid”, the technology giant is backing an ambitious project that will lay undersea cables to connect offshore windmills off the mid-Atlantic coast.

The project will run 350 miles along the New Jersey coast to Virginia and will be able to connect 6,000 megawatts of off shore turbine. An amount equivalent to 60 per cent of the wind energy installed in the entire U.S. last year, and enough to serve approximately 1.9 million households.

In addition to our overseas friends, it seems as though a coalition of British energy firms are attempting to turn our climate around and have united to reveal plans for a £54m smart grid project designed to test the impact of electric vehicles and solar panels on the UK grid.

The conglomerate hopes that the results of the trial will help speed up the installation of low-carbon technology across the UK, potentially saving homes and businesses around £8bn in energy costs and 43 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions.

Research analyst Verdantix predicts that over the next few years the green consultancy market is set to experience a boom, expanding by 60 per cent and is to reach £627 million this year alone.

Here at UKFast, we hope that these green initiatives are being driven by a combination of upcoming climate change legislation and a growing desire among blue-chip firms to use their market position as green innovators.

However, it seems as though many organisations are viewing the sustainability market as a by a product of monetary gain and promotional practises.

UKFast is determined to make a difference and change the way the internet is powered. The future is becoming carbon neutral, not powering up corporate social responsibility for PR purposes.