A green data center is a repository for the storage, management, and dissemination of data in which the mechanical, lighting, electrical and computer systems are designed for maximum energy efficiency and minimum environmental impact. The construction and operation of a green data center includes advanced technologies and strategies. Here are some examples:
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- Minimizing the footprints of the buildings
- The use of low-emission building materials, carpets and paints
- Sustainable landscaping
- Waste recycling
- Installation of catalytic converters on backup generators
- The use of alternative energy technologies such as photovoltaics, heat pumps, and evaporative cooling
- The use of hybrid or electric company vehicles
Building and certifying a green data center or other facility can be expensive up front, but long-term cost savings can be realized on operations and maintenance. Another advantage is the fact that green facilities offer employees a healthy, comfortable work environment. In addition, green facilities enhance relations with local communities.
There is growing pressure from environmentalists and, increasingly, the general public for governments to offer green incentives: monetary support for the creation and maintenance of ecologically responsible technologies.