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European Commission receives data centre climate lobbyists in major industry push

Member States have received a policy paper that includes a comprehensive set of 19 recommendations covering public procurement regulations.

By João Marques Lima

Founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

4 Mins

June 23, 2021 | 5:24 PM BST

European Commission receives data centre climate lobbyists in major industry push

The Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact counts now with 54 companies and 22 associations from across Europe.

Signatories of the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact have met with the European Commission in Brussels, Belgium, to present and assess the first policy paper setting forth the regulatory and policy recommendations needed to build a green cloud and data centre industry for Europe.

The Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact, launched last January, is a self-regulatory initiative designed to ensure that the cloud and data centre industry in Europe supports the continent’s goal of reaching climate neutrality by 2050.

The current signatories of the pact represent 90% of the industry in Europe and most of its key players.

The policy paper, developed at the request of the European Commission, includes a comprehensive set of 19 recommendations covering public procurement regulations, from the procurement and development of renewable energies that can be used by the cloud and data centre industry, to supporting the development of circular water and energy management, and recycling in the ICT sector.

According to the lobbyists, these recommendations for the European Union and its Member States “should drive faster change towards a climate-neutral cloud and data centre industry in Europe by 2030”.

Signatories of the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact have agreed to implement measurable energy efficiency targets, purchase 100% carbon-free energy, prioritise water conservation, reuse and repair servers, and look for ways to recycle heat.

The recommendations set forth in this first policy paper highlight how the regulatory and political framework for the ICT industry in Europe should be adapted to facilitate the realisation of these objectives.

Alban Schmutz, chairman of CISPE (Cloud Infrastructure Services Providers in Europe), said: “The digitalisation of our society and economy is key to the green transition, and a green cloud and green data centres will need to underpin this transformation.

“This policy paper sets out how we can get there faster, and how the European Union and its Member States can ensure that Europe is on the lead in the fight for a net-zero and digital future.”

Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact’s video presentation and why the industry is going green. Source: CNDCP

In addition to the policy paper being handed over to the European Commission, the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact board has also announced that 18 more data centre operators have signed the pact.

These include: Advanced Mediomatrix, Ark Data Centres, Basefarm, Blix Solutions, BrainServe, Bulk infrastructure, Datacenter One, EcoDataCenter, EBRC, EMC HostCo, EWL, IBM, Intel, Kao Data, Noris Network, ScaleUp, Switch Datacenters, and T-Systems.

An extra three industry associations have also joined the group, including Bitkom, Data Centre United, and FCDF.

With these new signatories, the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact counts now with 54 companies and 22 associations from across Europe.

Edan Dionne, VP, Environmental, Energy & Chemical Management Programs for IBM, new signatory of the Pact, said: “We believe that what IBM, and other members of the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact commit to deliver is crucial to the systemic change Europe is embarking on to become a net-zero GHG emissions economy by 2050.

“Joining the Pact is yet another demonstration of IBM’s longstanding commitment to sustainability and we look forward to doing our part toward achieving our shared goal.”

Also commenting, Michael Winterson, chairman of EUDCA (European Data Centre Association), said: “The Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact is pleased to welcome new operators and trade associations in this joint engagement to making the cloud and data centre industry climate-neutral by 2030.

“The policy paper presented to the European Commission is yet another milestone that will help us deliver our goals and commitments, making Europe the global leader in the green and digital economy.”

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João Marques Lima

Founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

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