The EIA’s California State Profile and Energy Estimates reveal that the costs of commercial and industrial electricity to businesses have increased by 50%-60%. With energy costs on the rise and the low global carbon energy reduction initiative making an impact, businesses are forced to rethink future technology research and development. This global initiative has steered organizations toward accepting green technologies, becoming more adaptable to growth and utilizing sustainable designs focused on a smaller, consolidated footprint. Along with improved power consumption, these efforts have allowed organizations to become more efficient and provide effective and sustainable operations.
International agreements, legislation and national government initiatives are helping steer the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption. Businesses operational costs can be a major part of an organization’s expense and managers are being urged to reduce costs, increase efficiency and effectiveness.
When you look at the early stages of business operations and computing technologies (1960s-2000s), hardware was largely dominated by vast, power-hungry equipment and machines. All this equipment required many larger components to perform tasks, requiring excessive footprint space for house machinery and computing. As technology evolved, components became smaller and more reliable, significantly reducing energy and space consumption. With this and many other footprint reductions and improvements, technology has become more practical, adaptable and affordable.
More and more organizations are trying to develop logical, efficient systems which are sustainable for future growth on-demand. For example, reducing server, switching and UPS footprints using modular equipment has given companies an adaptability to grow, reduce maintenance expenses and minimize downtime. High-efficiency air cooling systems along with reusing hot air have helped maintain cooling environments with 30% to 50% reductions in energy costs. Virtualized systems have helped operations achieve a relatively small hardware footprint and reduce power consumption and other expenses associated with server farms — switches, cabling and component replacements. All these areas combined lower ongoing operating, maintenance and expansion costs which often can be associated with growth.
Electrical transportation is another area businesses are finding ways to make better and more sustainable choices. Having a transformational approach is vital for growing industries and in the end, benefits trickle down to the customers in the form of growing on-demand services and competitive pricing. Strategies often come from more of a logical and practical point of view than having a written policy because as needs and technologies change, policies can be adjusted too.
Sustainable design manifests in the shape of:
• Adoption of modular (logical or physical) designated zones, easily relocated or replicated
• Adoption of reusable IT solution design for rapid deployment, maintenance, replication, upgrade and migration
• Adoption of containerization for site replication, relocation, business continuity and disaster recovery
• Reengineering existing white space
• New builds
As an organization, it is important to use the latest technology to maintain the lowest possible ongoing costs. For example, not only is it necessary for my company within the data center component environment, but we also apply this strategy to personnel and operational perspectives too. Outsourcing of facilities managed by service providers and proactive technology monitoring systems has allowed companies to streamline support, improve workflow and become more efficient. This is all achieved along with an increase of skill-sets and manpower that ultimately aid productivity.