Earth Day is upon us. This annual celebration began back in 1970, backed by participants 20 million strong and it has grown every year since then. All these years later, more than a billion people around the world are expected to observe this movement by raising awareness for the environment, natural resources, and wildlife. A justified global phenomenon, the concepts of eco-friendliness and ‘being green’ are now quite mainstream. Today, organizations, governments, and many other groups organize around these concepts and activities to produce policies and practices that aim to take better care of our Earth.
At one time, a single private company data center could consume enough power to supply tens of thousands of homes – in a single day. IT equipment energy use has an interesting profile, as we refer to an EPA report presented before Congress on Server and Data Center Energy Efficiency:
- Servers account for about 75 percent of total IT equipment energy use
- Storage devices will account for around 15 percent
- Network equipment runs about 10 percent
No matter how you look at it, that’s a lot of server power use and as computing has grown since these statistics were put together, consumption has undoubtedly increased. Every single day people around the world drive by nondescript buildings, offices, and warehouses that house countless servers that run around the clock without end. Much of the processing and storage capacity that is on store and ready to go is unused, sitting idle, or waiting to be properly decommissioned. You can also count all of the backup servers, backup network equipment, thousands of constantly running hard drives, lighting, and many more systems around a data center to see the scale of consumption. Additionally, vast energy resources are spent on keeping all of this as cool as possible. There is little doubt that the data center infrastructure of old has a massive effect on the environment, spewing out tons of CO2 while wastefully consuming resources.
Enter Cloud Computing
Cloud computing has made a positive impact towards changing this picture. The very forces and nature of cloud computing guarantee a focus on ever-greater efficiencies. Constructs such as virtualization, app streaming, containerization, hybrid computing, and scalable storage are technologies that illustrate how high efficiency rates and technical capabilities have provided businesses with power and responsible computing.
First of all, consolidation of applications and information systems through cloud computing presents organizations with the opportunity to become more efficient. By phasing out old applications, databases, and legacy systems (or just putting them to sleep), all of that ‘wasted’ resource utilization that was previously just on standby and idling is a minimal concern.
Next, the facts show that the modern cloud data center is able to operate more efficiently than an enterprise that runs its own data center or runs servers in a closet somewhere. Using the latest and most efficient server and network equipment, the capabilities presented to the enterprise are much greater through a scale cloud hosting provider such as Hostway. In fact, many of today’s cloud data centers have been specially constructed in areas where power is generated using renewable resources (such as hydroelectric, solar, wind, and geothermal). These modern data centers are built according to high-efficiency specifications, with the most efficient lighting, design, and resources possible.
It is reported that somewhere between 50 to 70 percent of the legacy data center electric bill is spent on powering servers that do little to no work at all. Cloud hosting providers (in a hardware renewal process that is never-ending) use the latest server systems and are far more efficient than older servers that came out just a generation or two ago. Improvements in efficiency, speed, and power consumption are part of a continuous goal. In essence, cloud customers not only gain from these efficiencies, they also reap the benefits of having a screaming fast platform at their disposal.
Cloud Computing Is Inherently Eco-Friendly
That’s not all. The power of cloud computing and the various computing models that have grown out of it have helped change the future of eco-friendly causes. Big Data modeling and analytics have helped many organizations crunch numbers, analyze data, and come up with the best data-driven strategies to deal with modern problems we face, including environmental issues. Many businesses strive to make better, more efficient products and they are using cloud-based technologies to reach those goals. Today, our understanding of environmental degradation, weather, and other elements that impact our earth are greater than ever before thanks to this amazing technology. We are becoming better through technology, using technology, thanks to the cloud.
Within the cloud and hosting industry, much of what is discussed comes down to an economic business case for each business. However, the disruptive story of cloud computing is still evolving and it is important to note that it features incredible environmental advantages. Cloud computing is a vital part of cleaning up our world and it presents an opportunity in more ways than many initially realize.
The Green Move
Hostway is ready to help companies make that ‘green move’. It is an initiative that will result in less cost, more service, faster performance, greater efficiencies and powerful capabilities. The question must be posed – what is not to like? There was a time when ‘going green’ was more expensive, but that is not the case in cloud and hosting. It starts with a phone call where we’ll walk through the process and come up with a strategy that addresses your businesses requirements best. Let’s talk about your apps, storage, hardware requirements, and more.