Many companies have yet to realize the cost savings that are possible by boosting data center energy efficiency and building a more optimized IT infrastructure.
But with the economic downturn, many firms are starting to look more closely at all cost areas.
A single computer used to take up a whole room. The smaller and more powerful computers and related hardware become, the more employees are able to accomplish. But this does come at a cost. America’s servers and data centers consumed about 61 billion kilowatt-hours in 2006, or twice as much as in 2000, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Consulting firm McKinsey predicts that by 2020 the biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions could derive from information and communications products and technologies —including laptops and PCs, mobile phones, data centers and computing and telecommunications networks.
Companies can start by looking inside their buildings. Using energy auditing tools, a company can conduct a thermal analysis of its data center and subsequently space servers and racks for maximum performance and reduced cooling costs, according to this four-part article by Baseline.
In 2008, the energy management services market in North America earned revenues of $20.35 billion, but this could double by 2013.
Silicon Valley has taken note. Cisco has introduced a new networking tool to help partners monitor energy use across an entire company. Called EnergyWise, the new system allows managers to monitor and manage energy consumption of Internet Protocol devices such as phones, laptops and access points.