Data Centers Are Going Green
Years ago, data centers presented difficulties and were not exactly compatible with the global ecosystem; however, things have started to improve as high-tech companies are becoming aware of how important it is to invest in green energy.
Facebook, Ebay, Netflicks, Google and thousands of online businesses would not be able to exist without “server farms,” which is another name for data centers. They range from closet size in small companies, to the structure being as immense as airplane hangers in larger organizations.
As American’s send emails and text messages or type in searches, most of them are not thinking about how much electricity is being used for each process. Much of the electricity utilized in the U.S. is generated by fossil fuels, which results in greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and smog, increasing environmental pollution. A report stated, in the year 2014, data centers consumed approximately the amount of electricity that could power all of the households in the states of Washington and Virginia combined.
The good news is companies are making an effort to become greener. According to Arman Shehabi, a research scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, data centers have reduced their carbon footprints down dramatically. His study showed between 2000 and 2010, the use of electricity increased, but by 2014 this growth had decreased considerably.
Along with using wind and solar energy, many companies are employing cloud-based applications, saving more money by combining the human mind with artificial intelligence.
Pierre Delforge, director of high-tech energy efficiency for the Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental group in San Francisco are happy about the changes businesses are making by lowering the emissions that encourages global warming. However; he is still concerned because only 5 percent of the 7000 huge data centers are represented in the reduction of using fossil fuels.
Companies such as Apple are dedicated to being environmentally responsible by not only using solar, water and wind power, but is also using recycled paper for packaging, as well as removing toxins such as arsenic, PVC, brominated flame-retardants and phthalates from their products. They now are utilizing renewable energy to power 97 percent of their stores.
As online information increase, there will always be challenges in how companies can be sustainable, without destroying the planet.