Digital Realty the leading global provider of data centre and colocation solutions, announced on May 7th, updates to its sustainability initiatives to encourage greener practices in the data centre industry. To accompany the sustainability updates, Digital Realty also released a new white paper, “Powering the Green Data Center,” to continue its commitment to providing diverse options for its clients to source clean energy.

“As the leading global provider of data center solutions, we’re committed to ongoing efforts that enhance the growth of our clients’ businesses while also minimizing the environmental impact of our increasingly digital world,” said A. William Stein, Digital Realty’s Chief Executive Officer. “The world is increasingly leveraging the economic and social value of being connected digitally, and data centers are the home of the physical infrastructure that underpins the digital world. Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for our clients to select more sustainable data center solutions.”

The white paper, which the company published today, is a planning guide authored by Digital Realty Director of Sustainability Aaron Binkley that identifies the considerations for moving to a clean energy model in the data centre, describes the growing importance of sustainability in the data centre, provides a definition of “clean” energy, and outlines options for sourcing clean energy.

Update on Sustainability Initiatives

  1. Energy Efficiency – Digital Realty’s expert staff is dedicated to improving energy efficiency in its data centres. This includes screening assets for low- and no-cost upgrades, as well as capital projects where highly energy-efficient products are given preference during replacement and upgrade. This also results in lower operating costs for its clients. Digital Realty’s participation in the Better Buildings Challenge exemplifies its commitment. The Better Buildings Challenge is a Department of Energy-led initiative to improve energy efficiency in data centers by 20 percent by 2020. For more details on this exciting program, visit Digital Realty’s blog post, Joining the White House’s Better Buildings Challenge.Digital Realty is also an active contributor to ASHRAE’s efforts to advance data center energy efficiency and sustainability. Paul Finch, Digital Realty’s Senior Technical Director, holds one of 16 voting positions with ASHRAE on the Technical Committee for Mission Critical Facilities, Data Centers, Technology Spaces and Electronic Equipment. This committee takes a global leadership role in developing new publications and standards in energy efficiency and sustainability for the data center industry.
  2. Cleaner Energy – In January 2015, Digital Realty launched the Clean StartSM program to support its clients’ goals to power their data centers with clean, renewable energy. This was the first industry initiative of its kind offering clean energy options for new leases at no incremental cost. Other data center companies have followed suit, and we’re glad they did.For calendar year 2014, Digital Realty’s portfolio average fuel mix contained 22% renewables; the company is working with power suppliers and clients to meet its long term goal of powering its data centers with 100% renewable energy. In addition, Digital Realty recently became a signatory to the Corporate Renewable Energy Buyers’ Principles, developed jointly by the World Wildlife Fund and the World Resources Institute. The principles seek to spur progress on resolving the challenges corporations face when buying renewable energy.
  3. Greener Client Solutions – Digital Realty has a successful track record in sustainability dating back through our history as a company, with more than 40 sustainable “green” building certifications, including the completion of the world’s first LEED gold-certified data center in Chicago in 2007. These data centers are built to best-in-class sustainability standards for energy performance and resource efficiency. This global success story includes projects in the United States, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Singapore and Australia.A few recent examples of recognition received for the company’s sustainable data centre solutions include:1. North America: Digital Realty’s data centre in Austin, Texas – a custom build for ARM Holdings – won a DatacenterDynamicsGreen Data Center award.2. EMEA: The London-area data centre recently launched for our client Rackspace is extremely energy-efficient due primarily to the design of its cooling system, which uses outside air for heat transfer. Since it is an indirect adiabatic solution, it doesn’t actually pull any of the outside air through the equipment on the IT floor.3. APAC: Digital Realty’s Singapore facility recently received a Green Mark Platinum certification by the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) and Infocomm Development Authority (IDA). This is the first time a colocation data centre in Singapore has achieved the Green Mark Platinum level under the category of “Existing Data Centre.”

“Digital Realty continues to expand its solutions for clients seeking clean energy, energy efficiency, and sustainability in the data centre industry,” said Aaron Binkley, Digital Realty’s Director of Sustainability. “For example, in an article published in 2008, InfoWorld recognized Digital Realty’s CTO and head of Portfolio Operations Jim Smith in its prestigious ‘CTO 25’ list as ‘something of an icon in the tech world as he was among the first – if not the first – in the industry to speak openly about the inner workings of an efficient data center at free how-to seminars and green computing forums.’ We look forward to accelerating our industry leadership in promoting sustainability in the data centre.”

To download the full paper, visit this link now: “Powering the Green Data Centre”


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