Free carbon calculator for understanding footprint of data centres unveiled

Schneider Electric has unveiled a new framework to help companies understand the full environmental impact of enterprise data centres. The framework, detailed in a whitepaper available for download here, includes a free Lifecycle CO2e TradeOff tool, the first of its kind for accurately estimating the total carbon footprint of data centres – including Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions.   

By quantifying Scope 3 emissions from their value chain, organisations can measure their total carbon footprint, including outsourced IT services from cloud and colocation service providers. This Schneider Electric whitepaper takes a data-driven approach to helping data centre operators identify and categorise emissions from operations and the supply chain, then prioritise efforts to make impactful carbon reductions.

As the US and EU are proposing rules to mandate, enhance, and standardise climate-related disclosures, accounting for and reporting on Scope 3 emissions will become a future requirement. Establishing and implementing a GHG framework that incorporates carbon counting and target setting while systematically reviewing company data and emission sources, is the foundation to creating an achievable reduction plan. Electricity generation, GHG emissions, and water consumption determine the carbon footprint and water footprint of data centres, including that of its suppliers.

“Developing a climate strategy that identifies the biggest source of carbon emissions in the value chain is fast becoming a data centre industry priority alongside the urgency to establish easy-to-use frameworks. We are 100 per cent behind the drive for the industry to become the most sustainable in the world by making resources free and readily available,” said Pankaj Sharma, Executive Vice President, Secure Power Division at Schneider Electric. “We have shared our latest whitepaper, and our free Lifecycle CO2 calculator, at a time when data centre operators are increasingly trying to understand their carbon footprint. Proactive data centre operators understand they will be held accountable for achieving net-zero climate goals in the future to meet the expectations of their stakeholders, including customers, investors, employees, business partners and communities up and down the value chain.”

Highlights of the whitepaper include a “Data Center Lifecycle CO2e Calculator” to quantify the details driving Scope 3 in an enterprise data centre like embodied and sub-system embodied carbon; an approach to managing a hypothetical one-megawatt data centre with a focus on Scope 3 emissions and proposed actions for improvements like purchasing efficient and low carbon products; and advice on standardised metrics and what to measure like fuel and energy-related activities, upstream transportation and distribution.

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