Datacenters Underestimating Coal Use

February 4, 2016 By Carl Weinschenk

datacenterDatacenters use tools that are obsolete for measuring their emissions, according Lux Research.

The story on the research at Penn Energy said that Lux’s data scientists found a way to improve carbon reporting by a factor of 80. The results, the researchers said, is that datacenters rely much more heavily on coal than claimed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Emissions & Generation Resource Integrated Database (eGRID).

Lux found that Google estimates are wrong in four of seven datacenters and that Amazon misses in more than 20 datacenters. The conclusion is that better analytic tools are needed to help guide datacenter energy efficiency efforts.

This week, Microsoft announced Project Natick, an initiative that will sink datacenter to the ocean’s floor in an effort to cut heating and cooling power demands.

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