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Sarah UKFast | Account Manager

Keeping it cool in the data centre

18 November 2021 by Katie Lander

As customers everywhere demand more environmentally friendly products and services, the pressure is now on for business leaders to deliver. 

According to one study, as many as 99% of CEOs surveyed said that sustainability issues are major priorities for their business. It’s becoming increasingly difficult for businesses to gain and hold market share without demonstrating that they leave the planet in a better state than they found it. In short, sustainability is no longer a nice to have – it’s essential. 

Perhaps more importantly, it’s also the right thing to do. 

But, being sustainable is pointless if you’re pushing responsibility and the carbon footprint down the supply chain. To be truly carbon neutral you need to ensure every partner and supplier you work with is also carbon neutral. That means ensuring the IT services you depend on are as sustainable as they can be. 

So how do you do that? And is it possible to have 100% carbon neutral technology? Let’s take a closer look.

Choosing the right data centre provider: What to look for

IT services, and particularly data centres, don’t have the greatest reputation when it comes to sustainability. But you might be surprised to learn that the reality is far from the common perception. In fact, it’s entirely possible for cloud and data centre providers to be carbon neutral. And we would know – UKFast has been carbon neutral for several years and was in fact the first data centre provider in the UK to do so.

A few years ago, it was difficult to find a carbon neutral cloud and managed hosting service provider. Now, it’s much easier, and there are several important steps data centre providers like us have taken to achieve carbon neutrality. If you’re looking for a new hosting partner to support your carbon neutral efforts here’s are a few crucial things to look out for:

  • Ensuring the energy that powers data centres is sourced from sustainable and renewable sources, from green energy providers.
  • Using energy efficient air conditioning and cooling systems – certified to an industry recognised PAS 2060 standard.
  • Running a carbon offset scheme for any situations where carbon can’t be eliminated – such as employee commutes and deliveries.
  • Phasing out legacy equipment and donating old servers to charity rather than disposing of them.
  • Using LED lighting in data centres, rather than fluorescent.

It’s important to remember that it is possible to be carbon neutral now – and many data centre providers have taken important steps like these to do so.

But, crucially, it also depends on the technology you’re using.

How the cloud can help with sustainability

Cloud technology, in general, is much more environmentally friendly than running an on-premises server or data centre. 

Through quantities of scale, cloud providers like Amazon and Microsoft can be much more efficient about the power they use to keep servers running, meaning your data requires much less power and cooling. 

In general, these cloud providers have also invested in sustainable and carbon neutral energy sources, so your carbon footprint is also reduced in the cloud. This makes it much easier to demonstrate and prove your sustainability credentials than when running an on-premises server. 

While most of the large cloud providers have invested in green and sustainable energy – this isn’t the case for all of them. So if you’re looking to make sure your services are as carbon neutral as possible consult with a managed services partner before deciding on the best partner.

Data centre sustainability: It’s time to get it right 

In 2021, there’s no excuse for not putting sustainability first. So whether you’re searching for cloud, dedicated servers, colocation or simple web hosting services – make sure sustainability is a key part of your buying requirements.

If you want to find out more about our carbon neutral data centre services, get in touch with our team today.