The use of energy by data centers has continued on its trajectory of rapid increase. In 2013, data centers in the United States consumed around 100 BILLION kilo-watt hours (kWh) of electricity – this is more than 2% of total US electricity use! If we made all our data centers just a mere 20% more efficient, we could save 20 billion kilo-watt hours by the year 2020. That equates to about $2 billion in cost savings – nothing to sneeze at! That’s why the current White House Administration has expanded the Better Buildings Challenge to include Data Centers in its quest to increase energy efficiency.
New partners in this endeavor include national laboratories, Federal agencies (including the EPA, DoD, and the SSA); as well as companies from the private sector (eBay, Staples and Home Depot, i.e…). These partners (view the complete list here) are vowing to improve energy efficiency of their data centers, which altogether are currently consuming more than 90 megawatts of power.
The Better Buildings Challenge offers many opportunities for cost and energy savings. For more more information on the current program, please visit the Department of Energy website by clicking here.