Jiangsu Acrel Electrical Manufacturing Co., LTD.
Jiangsu Acrel Electrical Manufacturing Co., LTD.

Data Centers: How to Achieve Carbon Neutrality?

At a time when controlling greenhouse gas emissions and actively addressing climate change has become a global consensus, "green, low-carbon and sustainable development" has become the common goal of social and economic development in all countries in the world. At present, 127 countries around the world have made "carbon neutrality" commitments. On September 22, 2020, my country proposed at the United Nations General Assembly that carbon dioxide emissions should peak by 2030, and strive to achieve "carbon neutrality" by 2060.

1. China's energy consumption is relatively high

In recent years, driven by the strong "new economy", my country's IDC business revenue has achieved continuous rapid growth, with an annual scale of 223.87 billion yuan in 2020, a year-on-year increase of 43.3%. Corresponding to the expansion of the data center industry, in the past 10 years, the overall power consumption of my country's data centers has increased rapidly at a rate of over 10% per year. In 2018, the total power consumption of data centers nationwide was 150 billion kwh, reaching 2.19% of the total social power consumption. It is expected that by 2025, the proportion will double to 4.05%, and data centers have become large energy consumers.

Data centers not only consume a large amount of energy, but also have a high level of energy consumption. According to the data released by the China Internet Data Center: In 2019, the market size of my country's data centers reached 156.1 billion yuan. In the same year, the total power consumption of my country's data centers reached 176.3 billion kWh, and the average energy consumption level of the entire data center industry was as high as 11,294 kW. _hour/10,000 yuan operating income, equivalent to 3.614 tons of standard coal/10,000 yuan operating income (converted at 320 grams of standard coal/kWh). In 2019, my country's steel industry leader: Baowu Group's comprehensive energy consumption per 10,000 yuan of output value is only 1.4 tons of standard coal/10,000 yuan. Although there may be some deviations in terms of statistical caliber and data sources, there is no doubt that the data center industry is characterized by high energy consumption.

2. The path to data centers and "carbon neutrality"

Achieving "carbon neutrality" in a data center is a systematic project, and how to maximize the development and utilization of clean and renewable electricity on the power supply side of the data center is particularly critical.

The power consumption side mainly includes the energy consumption of IT equipment, the energy consumption of air conditioners, and the energy consumption of the building itself. Various energy and environmental protection technologies should be integrated to reduce the energy consumption of the power consumption side. The overall technical development direction should be: improve the energy efficiency of equipment, adapt to the characteristics of clean and renewable power supply, and maximize the use of cold energy resources.

3. Energy efficiency monitoring solutions provided by Acrel

AMC Series Data Center Monitor Module is an intelligent system designed for the end of the data room, which can comprehensively collect all energy data, and provide accurate electrical parameter information for AC and DC power distribution cabinets. In addition, it can upload data to the dynamic environment monitoring system through communication, realize real-time monitoring and effective management of the entire data room, and provide a reliable guarantee for the realization of all-round green IDC.

First of all, the "carbon neutral" data center development model based on clean and renewable energy is the ultimate model for data center development, so that the development of the data center industry can get rid of the current passive situation. Second, as the price of clean, renewable electricity continues to fall, the economic viability of “carbon-neutral” data center development will become increasingly complete. Thirdly, the construction and operation of "carbon neutral" data centers are based on a new energy technology system. It is necessary to systematically integrate clean energy technology, refrigeration and cold energy utilization technology, energy storage technology, flexible power supply technology, etc. It is also necessary to make full use of power trading, carbon trading and other means as well as data center business model innovation. Finally, the development of "carbon neutral" data centers urgently needs the support and guidance of national policies, and the proportion of green electricity usage should be used as the evaluation standard for data centers, rather than the PUE value.