As the world becomes more interconnected, there is substantial growth in the amount of data generated and the need for data centers to handle store, process, and analyze that data. In 2015, data centers accounted for approximately 3 percent of global energy use, and this figure is expected to triple to 9 percent by 2020.i As a result of significant energy use, data centers are a growing source of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG). Global emissions from data centers are expected to reach 360 million metric tons of GHGs by 2030.ii Companies with a significant data center footprint have an opportunity to reduce environmental impacts through energy efficiency initiatives.
First Data is a global leader in commerce-enabling technology and solutions, serving approximately 6 million business locations and 4,000 financial institutions in 118 countries around the world. First Data is focusing on improving the energy efficiency of its data center operations.
In 2015, First Data continued actively measuring and managing energy consumption in three of its data center facilities. The company addressed its energy efficiency by implementing the following practices:
- Decommissioned its legacy computer hardware, a step made possible by the continued movement of processing platforms to new hardware and virtualized processing environments. Virtualization enables better utilization of physical equipment to achieve an equivalent processing output.
- Continued replacing its legacy computer room air conditioning inventory with high-efficiency units that offer additional capacity.
- Continued tuning and/or continuous commissioning of power and cooling infrastructure equipment to ensure that all systems are operating at their highest efficiency potential.
In absolute terms, GHG emissions from First Data facilities decreased by approximately 33 percent between 2009 and 2015, while efficiency improved by approximately 53 percent (GHGs/transaction volume) during the same time period. A significant portion of the initial energy reduction resulted from consolidation of data center facilities, from seven facilities in 2009 to three in 2015. First Data also realized energy savings by refreshing and enhancing power and cooling infrastructure equipment and utilizing computer virtualization. These reductions were achieved while transaction volume continued to increase. Energy efficiency improvements have helped First Data to avoid almost $23.1 million in electricity costs and 166,100 metric tons of GHG emissions since 2009.
|US Data Center Facilities (2009 Baseline)|
|Avoided GHGs (metric tons)||9,800||18,500||24,800||29,900||39,000||44,000||166,100|