Hi! This is Ki-Seop Kim, a University Reporter for LG CNS.
In the last posting, I discussed the reasons people pay attention to ‘green IT’ and what green IT can make possible in the battle for a better environment.
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Reducing CO2 Emission from Data Centers
Before talking about the actual application of green IT, I’d like to talk about the efforts companies in the IT field are making to reduce CO2 being emitted from their data centers. As I mentioned earlier, it is important to use as little power as possible in order to minimize the pollution it causes. Especially since the social responsibility that IT companies hold is growing, many of them are building more Eco-friendly data centers to conserve energy and to make their products available at a lower price which allows for a better brand image.
The Actual Cases Utilizing Green IT
In 2013, Microsoft decided to provide power to their data centers in Texas by building a wind power plant with 55 turbines which produce 43MW per hour, about 10% of the company’s annual power consumption. Google also set up their own solar power plant as well, spending about 110 billion dollars. Facebook established their first green data center in Sweden, and announced that they were going to build another data center in Iowa, USA, that only uses wind energy. E-bay is also known to use bio gas fuel cells as the main source of power for their data center.
Numerous other IT companies such as HP, IBM, and KT are trying to make their IDC (Internet Data Centers) more ‘green.’ They are looking for ways to build more Eco-friendly data centers in order to apply the concept of green IT more fundamentally and to increase their power efficiency. It’s also notable that NHN, a Korean internet service company was certified as platinum level, which is the highest among all the American authentification systems for environmentally-friendly buildings called LEED.
On the other hand, some look for ways to reduce the amount of CO2 emitted while a data center is running. This means even if we have hardware that work in an eco-friendly way, we also need software that will run the hardware more efficiently. Stratus, an algorithm developed by IEEE for example, manages the temperature in data centers worldwide by preventing overload. Stratus saves energy and reduces CO2 emissions by regulating the temperature, which is possible because it divides tasks for multiple data centers in multiple locations. Very much like cloud computing, this algorithm can break up the task and distribute it among different data centers which, as a result, prevents overload. This concept of clouding is becoming popular to those who are interested in controlling their buildings in a smart way. EOO (Energy Operating Online) installed at Korea University by Schneider, a French energy operation company, is another example of these smart solutions. Under this system, the data on energy consumption is collected immediately, and this data is used to come up with a better energy control plan for both managers and users.
As mentioned earlier, many companies besides IT companies working on better data centers are more interested in eco-friendly architecture, and are now developing new technology to reduce CO2 emission from buildings. A real sense of sustainability is possible only when you have both a new eco-friendly development and an efficient plan to operate/manage it. Because green IT involves technology that can not only develop, but also maintain such environmental establishments, more businesses are expected to apply green IT in the future.
In the next posting, we will learn about green IT applied by LG CNS and the future of green IT.