Intelligent CIO APAC Issue 25 - Page 37

TALKING

‘‘ business provider will be beneficial in executing a company ’ s sustainability strategy . assets storing zettabytes of data and running billions of applications .

What are new sustainable and ecofriendly innovations in the industry ?
The United Nations Climate Change Conference or COP26 last year introduced a variety of global initiatives to address climate change and climate risk , which also applies to the IT industry .
These include measuring carbon emissions and prioritizing actions that will have the biggest impact on reducing energy use . In Singapore , for example , we are seeing some data center operators adopting a multi-tiered sustainability strategy , such as shifting to renewables or clean energy and driving efficiencies in energy and water usage as well .
There are various innovations happening in each of these fields . For example , in case of energy optimization , immersion cooling technology can help companies scale their computing power easily and cost-effectively through a dramatic leap in data center cooling capabilities .
Servers and other components in the rack are submerged in a thermally conductive dielectric liquid , eliminating the need for air cooling or fans in the servers . This new approach is considered an energy efficient form of cooling , driving power usage efficiency ( PUE ) down .
From the point of view of circular economy , there are industry innovations under development on how to utilize the residual heat from data centers for other purposes . Data center operators are also keen to adopt recycling initiatives for new battery technologies .
How did the pandemic highlight the criticality of the data center industry to businesses across the world ?
While the pandemic accelerated digitization in various enterprises , it propelled disruption and ‘ new normal ’ in several areas , i . e . education , e-commerce , workspace , events , health monitoring , entertainment and the like .
The digital hardware and software critical to seamless interaction and timely service deliveries in these sectors are housed in the secure and 24x7 available modern data centers . The data center industry , acclaimed as an essential service , provided the much-needed physical infrastructure to house the IT
The pandemic saw the demand for cloud services soar which in turn are enabled through an interconnected network of millions of IT computing and storage assets in data centers around the world .
With the undeniably critical role played by data centers in the pandemic , data centers are poised to become as necessary as critical utility services in the next couple of years .
Is the consumption of power by data centers set to rise ? If so , why is this ?
Data centers , and hence their power consumption , will continue to grow in line with the inevitable growth of digitization and cloud adoption . However , the focus is on a strategic switch to a cleaner power source in the future while optimizing the energy usage in current and new facilities .
The growing efficiencies and changing mix towards renewable sources will balance the sheer increase in quantum of power usage . For example in Singapore , data centers accounted for approximately 7 % of energy consumption in 2020 according to the Ministry of Communication and Information ( MCI ). While power usage will go up with the lifting of the moratorium on new data centers , the new facilities will need to incorporate best-in-class efficiency and sustainability innovations .
Can you give any examples of data centers that are landmark projects in terms of sustainability ?
Green Mountain in Norway is one of the world ’ s greenest colocation operators , servicing customers in financial services , health care and government industries . They are big on sustainability and as part of their DC1 facility expansion project , they opted to choose new cooling technologies from Vertiv .
The solutions deployed helped Green Mountain solidify their commitment to sustainability and enable customers to optimize operations more efficiently .
According to Alexander de Flon Ronning , Design and Product Manager of Green Mountain : “ Sustainability affects everything we do and is critical whenever we build new colocation data centers . All our customers
Hitesh Prajapati , Country Manager of Vertiv Singapore
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