In Light of Power Consumption and Carbon Footprints, Data Centers Go Green


Picture of Citi’s Green Data Center in Frankfurt, Germany — Clancy, H. (2013, July 30). 12 green data centers worth emulating from Apple to Verne. Retrieved From:

In 2015, the world’s internet data centers consumed more power than all of the United Kingdom. We, as internet and presumably smartphone users, all contribute to this source of power consumption without much, if any, realization. And, as it turns out, 2% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, the equivalent of the entire airline industry’s carbon footprint, comes from this massive energy consumption. This, then, begs the question: do “green”  companies and individuals living “green” take into account their internet and remote data storage usage?

Think of this: according to, 2.5 Exabytes of data were produced everyday in 2016. That’s the equivalent of 250,000 Libraries of Congress or 90 years of HD Video! How much data will we produce in 2017 and just how big of a carbon footprint will that consumption leave? It’s a concerning question.

Luckily, many tech companies are aspiring to be completely powered by renewable energy in the next few years. Google plans to meet that goal this year. Meanwhile, Apple’s data centers have already made that achievement. Microsoft, on the other hand, plans to be using 50% renewable energy by 2018, but is already 100% carbon neutral. Also, Amazon hopes to reach the 50% mark this year.

Hardware innovations are also helping to utilize data centers and their power systems more efficiently. Some data centers are putting their data centers in colder climates in places like Canada to reduce the amount of power it takes to keep the equipment cool.

Regardless, Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) is an immensely competitive aspect for competing data centers. Companies like Telehouse  Europe, NEXTDC, and Equinix are all making great headway to make the world’s ever-growing database centers greener and more energy efficient.

To find out more about data centers, their carbon footprints, and power consumption, visit’s article: Data Centers ‘Going Green’ To Reduce A Carbon Footprint Larger Than The Airline Industry. 

Posted by: Josh LaMore LIS 653-1

Data Centers ‘Going Green’. (2017, January 25). Retrieved From:

Khoso, M. (2016, May 13). How Much Data Is Produced Everyday? Retrieved From:

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