Data centers: Three initiatives to reduce their footprint

Data centers have a significant impact on the environment. Reusing heat, using renewable energies and natural cooling… These are 3 initiatives to reduce their footprint.

Over 4,600 data centers exist in the world today

They are used to organize, process, and store digital data across the world. As they consume a lot of energy, these data centers have a significant environmental impact. Although the amount of digital data is expected to quadruple by 2025, data centers consume 1% of global electricity. This is more than aviation. Here are three initiatives to reduce this footprint.

Renewable energies

More and more data centers are running on renewable energies. This is the case of Lefdal Mine Datacenter, built in an old mine in Norway. It is powered directly by hydroelectric power plants and a wind farm. Making it the first carbon-neutral data centre in Europe.

Cooling them naturally

For its data centre in Hamina, Finland, Google has created a cooling system that runs on seawater. Microsoft, for its part, has decided to submerge its servers off the coast of Scotland, which allows for both the cooling and recovery of energy from ocean currents.

Reusing heat

The heat released by data centres can be used to produce energy. In Stockholm, the "Stockholm Data Parks" project is aiming to install data centers in the city center to directly heat houses.