EPEE: Sustainable Cooling and Sustainable Data Centres are a Natural Resource of the Future

Credits: EPEE

EPEE’s interactive webinar ‘The Natural Resource of the Future – how our data needs are shaping energy and cooling innovation’ on 20 May 2021 taught us everything we need to know when it comes to sustainable data centres!

As part of its Count on Cooling webinar series, the European Partnership for Energy and the Environment (EPEE) which represents the heating and cooling industry in Europe organised an interactive webinar to highlight the role of sustainable cooling in data centres.

The webinar not only explored how sustainable cooling is enabling our data-rich future, but also how data centre operators and the EU are enabling sustainable data centres.

Joining the webinar was a diverse mix of speakers. EPEE’s Director-General, Andrea Voigt, kick started the discussion and highlighted the need for sustainable cooling in data centres.

The efficiency of the cooling process depends on many different factors that go far beyond the cooling equipment itself. A very important aspect is the use of waste heat which offers a huge potential to reduce energy demand for heating in a cost-efficient way.

As we move to net zero emissions by 2050, energy efficiency, renewables and electrification will have to play a crucial role. In this context, datacentres are a great example for energy system integration. Indeed, datacentres consume electricity, which is transformed into heat that needs to be removed. For this we need cooling’ said Voigt.

From the EU perspective, Paolo Bertoldi, Senior Expert on Energy Efficiency with the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre discussed the EU Data Centre Code of Conduct which aims to raise awareness of energy efficiency and cost-effective energy saving opportunities for data centres.

Jonathan Evans from Total Data Centre Solutions educated the audience on reusing waste server heat which can help data centre operators achieve climate neutrality.  Reusing waste heat from servers is now becoming part of planning approvals in some regions including Amsterdam which Jonathan believes should be a practice copied across all markets.

Presenting the business side of things was Max Schulze, Executive Chairman of the Sustainable Digital Infrastructure Alliance who highlighted the sustainability potential of transforming data centre power and cooling infrastructure into as-a-service which echoed EPEE’s ‘Cooling as a service factsheet.

EPEE’s Count on Cooling webinar series is only getting started. The webinar series plans to provide more examples of sustainable cooling solutions in the future.