UK datacentres lack green credentials, says report

Organisations are struggling to cope with the growth of datacentres, but under-use existing infrastructure, according to a survey on green computing.

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Organisations are struggling to cope with the growth of datacentres, but under-use existing infrastructure, according to a survey on green computing.

A third of ICT departments estimate that they will run out of physical space for data storage within 12 months, and 60% expect to run out within two years, according to the survey of green IT conducted by Computerworld UK on behalf of practical environmental charity Global Action Plan.

Two-thirds of IT departments surveyed have already used 75% of their datacentre floor space.

Most data retention and storage polices are not environmentally sustainable, according to the national survey of IT professionals of large enterprises.

Furthermore, most enterprises under-utilise their existing data storage facilities. Nearly 37% store all data indefinitely. A fifth - 20% - only use under 30% of their server capacity. And a worrying 36% of respondants do not know or cannot measure how much of their server estate is being used.

The results reveal an alarming attitude towards the environmental damage caused by datacentres. Recently Gartner stated datacentres account for a quarter of IT-related carbon emissions, which in turn make up 2% of the world’s total carbon emissions.

The research, which was backed by Logicalis, surveyed around 120 IT professionals that collectively manage more than 500,000 workers in the UK, and have a combined budget of more than £475m.

Global Action Plan launched the survey as part of a larger in-depth report called The Inefficient Truth to politicians environmental and IT industry leaders at a special event at the House of Commons today. In the in-depth report, the charity detailed technology strategies that could improve datacentre efficiency, such as consolidation, intelligent datacentre design, dynamic cooling and server virtualisation.

Read our full coverage of the Global Action Plan event here.

Now read the executive summary of Global Action Plans reportAn inefficient truth

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