US Data Centers will become top polluters by 2020!

Data Centers in USA are using more electricity than they usually need and this was revealed in a survey conducted by Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). According to their latest 2015 report around 36 power plants, each capable of generating 500MW of power are being used to power the present lot of data centers in United States.

NRDC expects that by 2020, the nation will need another 17 to 18 similarly sized power plants to meet projected data center energy demands as economic activity becomes increasingly digital.

More power plants mean more use of fossil fuels to generate electricity and thus increase in carbon emissions which will make data centers as top polluting resources than automobiles.

But added pollution isn’t the only inevitability, according to a new report on data center energy efficiency from the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), an environmental action organization. The organization predicts that by 2020, data centers will be using 139 billion kilowatts hours of power, unlike 98 billion kilowatt hours in 2014 and that is almost a 51% increase.

The paper clearly specifies the lack of attention to data center energy efficiency on a national scale. The technical and substantial contributions to the study were made by several organizations including Microsoft, Google, Dell, Intel, The Green Grid and Facebook.

NRDC study clearly specified the fact that data centers were one of the few large industrial electricity users and the consumption of them was growing year on year.

According to the organization, some data centers are using other natural resources like wind and solar to power up their server farms. But still their power consumption was not lessening in practical and was infact growing due to various factors like lack of best practices in running data centers in efficient way and such.

The report says that if data centers adopt aggressive energy management programs, economic benefits would be substantial. A 40% reduction in energy use can be witnessed which accounts to $3.8 billion in savings for businesses.

Will that be possible in future? Well, only time can say about it.


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