From the book: Green Technology Strategies
EU Code of Conduct for Data Centres
From: EU Code of Conduct for Data Centres, European Commission, Directorate-general, JRC Joint Research Centre, Institute for Energy Renewable Energies Unit, 30 October 2008, URL:
Introduction from the code:
This Code of Conduct has been created in response to increasing energy consumption in data centres and the need to reduce the related environmental, economic and energy supply security impacts. The aim is to inform and stimulate data centre operators and owners to reduce energy consumption in a cost-effective manner without hampering the mission critical function of data centres. The Code of Conduct aims to achieve this by improving understanding of energy demand within the data centre, raising awareness, and recommending energy efficient best practice and targets.
This Code of Conduct is a voluntary initiative aimed to bring interested stakeholders together, including the coordination of other similar activities by manufacturers, vendors, consultants and utilities. Parties signing up will be expected to follow the intent of this Code of Conduct and abide by a set of agreed commitments.
Environmental Statement Electricity consumed in data centres, including enterprise servers, ICT equipment, cooling equipment and power equipment, is expected to contribute substantially to the electricity consumed in the European Union (EU) commercial sector1 in the near future. Western European electricity consumption of 56 TWh per year can be estimated for the year 20072 and is projected to increase to 104 TWh per year by 2020.
The projected energy consumption rise poses a problem for EU energy and environmental policies. It is important that the energy efficiency of data centres is maximised to ensure the carbon emissions and other impacts such as strain on infrastructure associated with increases in energy consumption are mitigated.
Historically, data centres have been designed with large tolerances for operational and capacity changes, including possible future expansion. Many today use design practices that are woefully outdated. These factors lead to power consumption inefficiencies. In most cases only a small fraction of the grid power consumed by the data centre actually gets to the IT systems.
Most enterprise data centres today run significant quantities of redundant power and cooling systems typically to provide higher levels of reliability. Additionally IT systems are frequently run at a low average utilisation Over provisioning, ensuring availability and associated costs were previously considered a negligible risk to business performance because energy costs were relatively small in comparison to the IT budget, and environmental responsibility was not considered to be the remit of the IT department. However, with rising energy prices this is no longer the case, and the issue of energy consumption at the individual data centre level is becoming increasingly important as operational energy expenditures and ecological impact of the energy consumed begins to play an ever important role in overall cost of ownership of data centres.
Preliminary evidence and the increasing willingness of manufacturers and vendors to compete on the basis of energy efficiency in data centres confirms that there are efficiency gains (for example simply by using existing power management technologies) still to be realised without prohibitive initial costs that can lower the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).
Businesses are also becoming increasingly aware of their environmental impacts and the need to reduce these.
Many data centres operators are simply not aware of the financial, environmental and infrastructure benefits to be gained from improving the energy efficiency of their facilities.
Even awareness does not necessarily lead to good decision making, simply because there is no framework in place for the operators to aspire to. Making data centres more energy efficient is a multidimensional challenge that requires a concerted effort to optimise power distribution, cooling infrastructure, IT equipment and IT output.
Many activities have been initiated within the industry and there are numerous vendor specific products and services on offer. However, there is a risk of confusion, mixed messages and uncoordinated activities. Independent assessment and coordination — tailored to European conditions such as climate and energy markets regulation — is required to lower the barriers of access to and application of these energy saving opportunities.
A voluntary scheme within the EU such as the Code of Conduct will provide a platform to bring together European stakeholders to discuss and agree voluntary actions which will improve energy efficiency.
To help all parties address the issue of energy efficiency, data centre owners and operators, data centre equipment and component manufacturers, service providers, and other large producers of such equipment will be invited to participate in the Code of Conduct, by signing this Code of Conduct.
This Code of Conduct proposes general principles and practical actions to be followed by all parties involved in data centres, operating in the EU, to result in more efficient and economic use of energy, without jeopardising the reliability and operational continuity of the services provided by data centres.
The commercial sector is also referred as the tertiary sector and it includes both private and public building hosting data centre. In this case energy consumption of data centres of companies in the industrial sector is included.
This is based upon the Draft UK Market Transformation Programme European Enterprise Server installed base model, and assumes an upper bound ratio of 1:2 between electricity consumed by the server equipment within the data centre or server room, against that consumed by cooling equipment and through power losses. The lower bound ratio of 1:1 gives total electricity consumption close to 37 TWh. The upper and lower bound ratio is based on several different sources of measurements of electricity consumption in the data centre.
These include the US DoE, the US EPA Energy Star, the Green Grid association, Climate Savers Computing Initiative, the IEEE E-Server project
Best Practices for the EU Code of Conduct on Data Centres, Version 1.0.0, First Release, European Commission, 2008, URL: http://sunbird.jrc.it/energyefficiency/pdf/CoC%20data%20centres%20nov2008/Best%20Practices%20v1.0.0%20-%20Release.pdf
Reporting Form, Version 1, European Commission, 2008, URL: http://sunbird.jrc.it/energyefficiency/pdf/CoC%20data%20centres%20nov2008/Reporting%20form%20v1.0%20Final.xls
EU Stand-by Initiative, The European Actions to Improve the Energy Efficiency of Electrical Equipment while either OFF or in Stand-by, European Commission, 2008, URL: http://re.jrc.ec.europa.eu/energyefficiency/html/standby_initiative_data_centers.htm
From the book: Green Technology Strategies
This book is about how to reduce carbon emissions and achieve other environmental benefits by using computers and telecommunications technology. It is designed to be used within an online course for professionals, using mentored and collaborative learning techniques.
Copyright © Tom Worthington, 2009
Publisher: Tomw Communications, PO Box 13, Belconnen ACT 2617, Australia. Website: http://www.tomw.net.au/green
- ISBN: 978-0-9806201-7-7 (Website October 2009)
- ISBN: 978-0-9806201-4-6 (Hardcover January 2010)
- ISBN: 978-0-9806201-3-9 (Paperback October 2009)
- ISBN: 978-0-9806201-2-2 (PDF e-Book October 2009)
- ISBN: 978-0-9806201-6-0 (Amazon Kindle e-Book January 2010)
- ISBN: 978-0-9806201-5-3 (Large-print Paperback January 2010)
- IMS Content Package (May 2011)
- Moodle Backup File (May 2011)
- Apple iPad and other ePub readers (June 2011)
New edition available: ICT Sustainability: Assessment and Strategies for a Low Carbon Future, September 2011.
These notes are used for the courses:
Green ICT Strategies (ACS25): offered in the Postgraduate Program of Open Universities Australia and available from 2010 to students of Curtin University, Griffith University, Macquarie University, Monash University, RMIT University, Swinburne University and the University of South Australia,
Green Technology Strategies: offered in the Computer Professional Education Program, Australian Computer Society (first run as "Green ICT Strategies" in February 2009), and
The notes were first published as an electronic and paperback book in 2009 (Green ICT, Tom Worthington, Tomw Communications, 2009). Students can download or print their own copy of the e-book from the course learning management system, which is likely to be more up to date.
Green Technology Strategies: Using computers and telecommunications to reduce carbon emissions by Tom Worthington is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.5 Australia License, except for institutions covered by a Copyright Agency Ltd Statutory Licence.