There is a statistic that is often thrown at the data center industry. One that, perhaps, more importantly, criticizes it: the dreaded ‘using 20 percent of the world’s electricity by 2030’ statistic.
For those of us actually working in the industry, this seems a little over-dramatic. Yes, it is a high power-usage industry, but it is also an industry that is working towards more sustainable approaches to electricity usage every year, and one that is seeing that progress pay off.
In this week's episode of the Zero Downtime podcast, we sat down with the man whose research kicked this misconception off in 2015, to talk about the importance of relying on the most up-to-date data, Anders Andrae.
“It is very important to read the latest article. But how can you teach somebody to do that? I have made so many updates, and it's [the numbers are] getting more moderate.
“People may be looking for fantastical numbers, and you can publish those but then you need to revise them: that is the scientific method, that you always revise with the latest version of the truth, and that you make sure somebody can measure your data.”
Looking at Andrae’s research from the more recent years, this is exactly what has happened. As he has gathered more data, as the industry has changed and adapted for a more sustainable future, 2030 predictions don’t look the same as they did before.
“I believe in the massive growth of the electricity used by data centers predicted. At the UN, the growth was predicted to go towards 1000 terawatt-hours in 2030. I believe in that because the growth of installing planned is, to my understanding, very rapid.”
It is rapid, but it is also growing alongside the drive towards more sustainable approaches to powering, cooling, and all the other aspects of running a data center.
Take a look at Anders’s more up-to-date research here for a more accurate model of the future of the industry here.
Tune in to the latest DCD Zero Downtime episode to listen to the full conversation, discussing the data and more importantly, what Anders Andrae thinks we should be looking at: the benefits of IT, as well as the energy cost.