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Data Center Managers to Cut Power to Save Money

Apparently, "greening" one's data center is going to have to take a backseat to other priorities in this cash-strapped economic environment.

"The effects of the credit crunch mean that reducing the carbon footprint of data centers has become less of a priority than ever before; saving money is still the number one reason for lowering power consumption in today's data centers," according to a survey released by the organizers of Data Centre World, a UK data center expo.

Attendees at the show were polled and results showed that only one in eight respondents are implementing energy saving initiatives to reduce their company's carbon footprint, versus one in three in 2008.

On the bright side, over two thirds of data centers are implementing policies and technologies to reduce their energy consumption in an effort to save money, not to go green. However, the researchers look at this as good news for the environment anyway.

Still, the research also revealed that 8 percent of data center managers are not bothered about their future power consumption, and are not implementing any power saving strategies to be more green. Given the sector's voracious appetite for electricity, this is worrying news to the researchers. One in 10 data center managers would like to be doing more to reduce power consumption, but concerns that implementing these strategies would be too difficult and impact upon the service they can offer customers are preventing them from doing so.

There is still room for improvement, according to the study, as not a single respondent thought that their data center was already completely optimized in terms of energy efficiency. Additionally, only 2 percent of managers stated that being more economical would be prohibitively expensive, so embarking on such projects are realistic aspirations for most data centers, according to the researchers.

"Last year, energy efficiency and power conservation were the words on everyone's lips, today energy efficiency and power conservation are instead the main tools for keeping afloat during the credit crunch," said Sarah Williams, event director of Turret Group, organizers of Data Centre World, in a statement. "It is vital for data centers to cut costs at every possible opportunity in order to maintain their businesses, especially given the reduced customer demand at the moment."

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