Green your data center and get payback in two years or less

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March 25, 2008

Green your data center and get payback in two years or less

The March issue of Green Business magazine reports in an article title "Get Tech Smart" on the fast ROI from green IT. 

Green_business_cover Key excerpts . . .

In the drive to promote energy efficiency and to improve their own bottom lines through innovation and “green” marketing, IT companies are pushing a more environmentally friendly approach to computing, and they’re doing their best to walk the talk as well. The critical hot spot for all this activity is the data centre...“If this room was a data centre, you’d typically be using 10 to 30 times the amount of energy it’s using as an office,” notes Steve Sams, vice-president of global site and facilities services at IBM Corp...
    The statistics vary depending on who you talk to, but everyone agrees that data centres are energy hogs. The problem, according to Sams, is that many businesses are operating without the facts. “If companies consider their data centre as a car, they don’t actually know if their data centre is a Toyota Prius data centre or a Humvee data centre. They don’t know how many miles per gallon that data centre is getting.”...Sams agrees...most CIOs aren’t responsible for their energy bills. “They may only be paying for a tiny fraction of their energy use because they are charged the same amount per square foot as office space,” he says. “Few have looked at their energy bills either, so they lack the facts to make real business decisions.”
    Another challenge Sams points to is clients not understanding the payback. “These aren’t six, 12 or 20-year payback periods,” he stresses. “What we’re finding is that significant improvement is available in all data centres we looked at with payback periods of two years or less. And we typically find that customers are discovering savings in the 20-55 per cent range.”...IBM has done something similar, rationalizing its internal data centre infrastructure in the past decade from 155 host data centres and 31 networks down to one network and 7 data centres. This is saving them $1.5 billion a year in operating costs. The process itself proves a point for the companies’ customers...As Steve Sams notes, there are other tools coming to the market that could take data centre management to a new level by offering greater automation controls for energy use. “Start taking advantage of these so you can set a policy around service levels and energy management, and let the tools start saving you money by automating what it is capable of — moving workloads around, turning off servers that don’t need to be used as part of active energy management.”

by Will Runyon March 25, 2008 in Design, Energy Efficiency, Services, Who's Who
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