In 2010, the state of California passed a mandate that set a goal for a 30 percent reduction in power consumption by datacenters by 2012. According to an article on TMCNet.com, the state is on their way to achieving that goal. The reasons, however, is not entirely because of reductions in power consumption that stem from efficiency on the part of datacenters.
The Cannery data center, one of the largest in the states, closed down and, according to the report, that contributed to more than 50% of the energy savings reported by the state. However, the report goes on to quote state officials as crediting PC power management strategies with being heavy contributors to the reduction of almost 22.5 million kilowatts per hour of power consumption on the part of datacenters.
Datacenters, many of which span almost 100,000 square feet in size, consume a huge amount of their electricity in an effort to keep their systems cool in their interior environments regulated. The states equipment includes telecom and IT equipment which is both named in the mandate as needing to reduce the amount of energy that they consume. Concerns about the environment and about saving money are both listed as reasons for the mandate.
Datacenter consolidation is also named as one of the reasons that the state has been able to save money on the amount of power it consumes. Maximizing the efficiency of the datacenter can involve processes such as optimizing the equipment locations to take full advantage of the cooling system’s most powerful equipment, controlling the exchange of interior and exterior air and positioning the equipment and racks that increase efficiency. PC power management strategies generally involve simply shutting down unnecessary equipment when it is not in use and using the built-in features on most computers to shut down certain parts of the computer when it is idle.
Private companies have also been increasingly interested in making their datacenter facilities greener places. Some of the largest companies in the Internet world have committed to powering their facilities with green energy, including that produced with wind power and other renewable sources.