|By Phil Worms||
|March 6, 2012 05:00 AM EST||
As we enter the third month of 2012, we can but hope that this should be the year that the UK Government finally realises that its Carbon Reduction Commitment Scheme is bad for business.
Introduced under the banner of helping UK industry to become more energy efficient it seems to want to do nothing but penalise growth.
Our raison d’etre as the owner and operator of five UK data centres is to help businesses and organisations throughout the private and public sector to consolidate their IT infrastructures. By moving their servers off their premises into data centres like ours, which are efficiently run to maximise computer usage in environmentally-controlled settings, we are driving business efficiency.
MPs seem to think that because we use a lot of energy that we waste it. We don’t. In fact energy stewardship is critical to our business success. Our customers have the benefit of control panels that show them exactly what energy their servers are consuming so that they can make sound business decisions as they move forward.
Virtualization of servers is shrinking carbon footprints by making organisations less reliant on enormous racks of hardware. And in terms of the actual consumer, the move to online retailing has lessened the need we have as human beings to always be driving in and out of town to go shopping.
The first ‘league table’ for the Carbon Reduction Commitment Scheme was published in November 2011 with Manchester United among the twenty two organisations ranked joint first. Manchester United came top alongside several NHS Trusts, OFGEM and British American Tobacco plc.
Comparing like with like? The CRC scheme rightly produced as much hair dryer treatment as Sir Alex Ferguson does in the dressing room – with Tim Yeo MP, chairman of the Energy and Climate Change Committee calling it ‘a straight forward theft’ after it was revealed that the decision to recycle the revenues from the scheme had raised £743m for HM Treasury.
There is a real problem for companies wanting to improve their green credentials because their ranking might not necessarily reflect their commitment to carbon reduction. Investing in more efficient technology to do this might lead to an increase in their energy consumption in the short term while trying to reduce it in the long term. A clearer picture needs to emerge and for businesses and organisations to be judged on all the different ways in which they are trying to reduce their environmental impact, not just their use of fossil fuels.
Data centre providers are making efforts to use renewable energy where possible. Iceland has opened its first 100 per cent carbon neutral data centre site to support UK and US companies in their environmental strategies. The Keflavik site taps into Iceland’s renewable energy power grid which takes advantage of hydro and geothermal energy sources and the country’s ambient temperature for cooling. And social network giant Facebook is to build its first data centre outside the US in the northern Swedish city of Lulea, close to the Arctic Circle, because of its access to renewable energy and its cold climate. In the UK even Swindon is playing host to a new data centre from Capgemini which has invested in the latest cooling technology.
Yet these are all £multi-million new builds. David Cameron pledged to make this ‘the greenest government ever’ by shifting to a low carbon economy but where are the incentives for existing data centres and their customers?
Cold aisle containment, virtualization and the cloud can only take us so far.
The IT industry is like the development of the motorways in this country. When Harold Macmillan opened the M6 Preston By-Pass, the UK’s first motorway, in 1958, it was just two lanes of highway stretching a mere 8 miles. Today there are over 2,200 miles of motorway, connecting all parts of the country. The internet is like a super motorway, its network allowing people and businesses to connect, shop and trade like never before without having to get into their cars to do it, and yet it seems to be seen as a pariah because it uses energy.
Nobody’s saying that energy efficiency isn’t important but businesses, especially SMEs which the government says it wants to drive recovery, need to be encouraged to think about their carbon use rather than be punished for it.
Technology can help to reduce costs and provide innovative ways to work and increase revenues. This in turn points to sustainability and growth, important issues in times of economic difficulty.
Reducing the carbon footprint is not easy, but European businesses must invest in green technology that enables them to be more energy efficient and rely less on natural resources. Over the next 20 to 30 years, Europe has some specific green regulatory targets to meet and the uptake in the Smart Grid, which can generate energy through renewable resources, will be critical in achieving these goals. The investment in renewable energy will also create new employment opportunities so it is in the interest of organisations to support the initiative by utilising greener technology.
The UK Government should be considering how to supply us all with the renewable energy we would happily use, at a price that we can afford. We don’t want UK business to be driving along the back lanes while everywhere else in the western world is speeding along the digital superhighway.
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lea...
Sep. 29, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 386
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place Nov 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long dev...
Sep. 29, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 3,502
Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is expected in the amount of information being processed, managed, analyzed, and acted upon by enterprise IT. This amazing is not part of some distant future - it is happening today. One report shows a 650% increase in enterprise data by 2020. Other estimates are even higher....
Sep. 29, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 4,164
The Jevons Paradox suggests that when technological advances increase efficiency of a resource, it results in an overall increase in consumption. Writing on the increased use of coal as a result of technological improvements, 19th-century economist William Stanley Jevons found that these improvements led to the development of new ways to utilize coal. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Thiele, Chief Strategy Officer for Apcera, will compare the Jevons Paradox to modern-day enterprise IT, e...
Sep. 29, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 2,386
What happens when the different parts of a vehicle become smarter than the vehicle itself? As we move toward the era of smart everything, hundreds of entities in a vehicle that communicate with each other, the vehicle and external systems create a need for identity orchestration so that all entities work as a conglomerate. Much like an orchestra without a conductor, without the ability to secure, control, and connect the link between a vehicle’s head unit, devices, and systems and to manage the ...
Sep. 29, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 288
What are the new priorities for the connected business? First: businesses need to think differently about the types of connections they will need to make – these span well beyond the traditional app to app into more modern forms of integration including SaaS integrations, mobile integrations, APIs, device integration and Big Data integration. It’s important these are unified together vs. doing them all piecemeal. Second, these types of connections need to be simple to design, adapt and configure...
Sep. 29, 2016 10:45 AM EDT Reads: 437
In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Lee Atchison, Principal Cloud Architect and Advocate at New Relic, discussed cloud as a ‘better data center’ and how it adds new capacity (faster) and improves application availability (redundancy). The cloud is a ‘Dynamic Tool for Dynamic Apps’ and resource allocation is an integral part of your application architecture, so use only the resources you need and allocate /de-allocate resources on the fly.
Sep. 29, 2016 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 2,893
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
Sep. 29, 2016 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 4,441
SYS-CON Events announced today that CDS Global Cloud, an Infrastructure as a Service provider, will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CDS Global Cloud is an IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) provider specializing in solutions for e-commerce, internet gaming, online education and other internet applications. With a growing number of data centers and network points around the world, ...
Sep. 29, 2016 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 2,976
Information technology is an industry that has always experienced change, and the dramatic change sweeping across the industry today could not be truthfully described as the first time we've seen such widespread change impacting customer investments. However, the rate of the change, and the potential outcomes from today's digital transformation has the distinct potential to separate the industry into two camps: Organizations that see the change coming, embrace it, and successful leverage it; and...
Sep. 29, 2016 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 1,232
SYS-CON Events announced today that LeaseWeb USA, a cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) provider, will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. LeaseWeb is one of the world's largest hosting brands. The company helps customers define, develop and deploy IT infrastructure tailored to their exact business needs, by combining various kinds cloud solutions.
Sep. 29, 2016 10:15 AM EDT Reads: 3,296
Major trends and emerging technologies – from virtual reality and IoT, to Big Data and algorithms – are helping organizations innovate in the digital era. However, to create real business value, IT must think beyond the ‘what’ of digital transformation to the ‘how’ to harness emerging trends, innovation and disruption. Architecture is the key that underpins and ties all these efforts together. In the digital age, it’s important to invest in architecture, extend the enterprise footprint to the cl...
Sep. 29, 2016 10:15 AM EDT Reads: 598
There are several IoTs: the Industrial Internet, Consumer Wearables, Wearables and Healthcare, Supply Chains, and the movement toward Smart Grids, Cities, Regions, and Nations. There are competing communications standards every step of the way, a bewildering array of sensors and devices, and an entire world of competing data analytics platforms. To some this appears to be chaos. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate a...
Sep. 29, 2016 10:15 AM EDT Reads: 2,365
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
Sep. 29, 2016 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 3,903
Big Data has been changing the world. IoT fuels the further transformation recently. How are Big Data and IoT related? In his session at @BigDataExpo, Tony Shan, a renowned visionary and thought leader, will explore the interplay of Big Data and IoT. He will anatomize Big Data and IoT separately in terms of what, which, why, where, when, who, how and how much. He will then analyze the relationship between IoT and Big Data, specifically the drilldown of how the 4Vs of Big Data (Volume, Variety,...
Sep. 29, 2016 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,164
WebRTC is bringing significant change to the communications landscape that will bridge the worlds of web and telephony, making the Internet the new standard for communications. Cloud9 took the road less traveled and used WebRTC to create a downloadable enterprise-grade communications platform that is changing the communication dynamic in the financial sector. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Leo Papadopoulos, CTO of Cloud9, discussed the importance of WebRTC and how it enables companies to focus...
Sep. 29, 2016 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 2,280
Internet of @ThingsExpo has announced today that Chris Matthieu has been named tech chair of Internet of @ThingsExpo 2016 Silicon Valley. The 6thInternet of @ThingsExpo will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Sep. 29, 2016 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 2,703
Technology vendors and analysts are eager to paint a rosy picture of how wonderful IoT is and why your deployment will be great with the use of their products and services. While it is easy to showcase successful IoT solutions, identifying IoT systems that missed the mark or failed can often provide more in the way of key lessons learned. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Peter Vanderminden, Principal Industry Analyst for IoT & Digital Supply Chain to Flatiron Strategies, will focus on how IoT de...
Sep. 29, 2016 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 1,206
Ask someone to architect an Internet of Things (IoT) solution and you are guaranteed to see a reference to the cloud. This would lead you to believe that IoT requires the cloud to exist. However, there are many IoT use cases where the cloud is not feasible or desirable. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Dave McCarthy, Director of Products at Bsquare Corporation, will discuss the strategies that exist to extend intelligence directly to IoT devices and sensors, freeing them from the constraints of ...
Sep. 29, 2016 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 2,647
One of biggest questions about Big Data is “How do we harness all that information for business use quickly and effectively?” Geographic Information Systems (GIS) or spatial technology is about more than making maps, but adding critical context and meaning to data of all types, coming from all different channels – even sensors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, William (Bill) Meehan, director of utility solutions for Esri, will take a closer look at the current state of spatial technology and ar...
Sep. 29, 2016 09:30 AM EDT Reads: 396