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Carbon scheme could boost datacentre efficiency

The CRC Energy Efficiency scheme will ultimately help organisations running large datacentres, according to consultants
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Written by Tom Espiner, Contributor on

A government initiative to cut carbon emissions from business may have a positive impact on UK datacentres, according to consultancy firm the Uptime Institute.

The CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme (CRC), which was formerly known as the Carbon Reduction Commitment, came into force on Thursday. Businesses that use more than 6,000MWh per half hour need to register on the scheme by September.

The cost to register for businesses is £950, while the penalty for failure to register is £5,000. The CRC is essentially a cap and trade scheme, where organisations buy carbon credits that they can also sell on. All the money raised by the scheme will go back to its participants. The more efficient the organisation, the greater the return.

Overall, the scheme will have a positive effect on organisations that run datacentres, according to Julian Kudritzki, vice president of the Uptime Institute.

"There are definitely benefits when datacentre managers are compelled to look closely at the efficiency of their organisation," Kudritzki said. "It's beneficial in terms of cost, and in terms of optimised delivery."

Inefficient organisations will also benefit from the scheme, according to Kudritzki. One of the reasons that organisations run inefficient datacentres is usually that they have not optimised server utilisation, he said.

In addition, inefficient cooling and airflow can lead to downtime. These kinds of problems will now have to be addressed by organisations, leading to more efficiency and uptime, Kudritzki added. Efficient organisations will benefit from the money raised from the scheme participants.

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