Iceland’s green data centers are receiving growing interest. They run 100% on renewable energy and offer the lowest carbon footprint in the industry.
It does indeed matter if a data center is green or not. According to a report by UBM Tech and InformationWeek, 22 percent of 100 executives said they regularly track energy usage in their data centers, and close to 60 percent of IT decision makers say the state of their data center is fair, serious or urgent, and at the brink of running out of capacity in 2014. For many of those executives and IT people, Iceland may be the perfect location for their data.
Small and large companies alike are looking for greener options. Adobe, eBay, Facebook, Hewlett-Packard, Salesforce and Symantec have joined the Future of Internet Power initiative to showcase low-carbon power. IBM is heavily into promoting green data center design; the European Union Commission honored 27 of them in January 2012. EBay also has raised the bar by with its Digital Service Efficiency (DSE) methodology, which links how many “buy” or “sell” business transactions are completed per kilowatt-hour.
Recently, the GreenBizGroup listed 12 green data centers and co-location facilities that stand out for innovative cooling, green energy or head-turning designs. One of them is the data centre of Verne Global in Iceland. According to GreenBiz, the geothermal and hydroelectric-powered campus of Verne Global in Southwest Iceland calls itself the first zero-carbon data center. Among its customers are automaker BMW Group and the Climate Action organization.
BMW is using the campus of Verne Global for crash simulations, aerodynamic calculations and other computer-aided design (CAD) purposes. This requires plenty of electricity, both for the transactions and to keep the infrastructure cool. By moving ten of its high-performance computing clusters (HPC) to Iceland from Germany, BMW hopes to reduce annual carbon emissions by 3,570 metric tons.
What is no less interesting for BMW and other companies considering where to host their data, Iceland not only offers green electricity and natural cooling, but also electricity prices that are lower than anywhere else in Europe. Therefore, it is quite obvious that Iceland has excellent possibilities for becoming a leading data centre hub.