In 2021, sustainability has become a central part of corporate strategy for any business. It now is especially vital in sectors experiencing such recent rapid, compounded growth, like the data center industry. The pandemic gave a turbo boost to the need for new developments surrounding sustainability. This was especially evident in the data center industry with the phenomenal surge in data usage that’s been seen worldwide since March 2020.
In an October 2020 Leading Edge Forum report, the then-Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, said: “We are very likely to see a politically-led rapid economic rebalancing, leading to a globalized low-carbon economy, at some point in the near future. When a massive global economic shift occurs, it favors the organizations that have prepared—and the impacts of global climate change are expected to be significantly larger and much more permanent than the impacts of the pandemic.”
The concept of sustainability has been fueling many forward-thinking businesses to develop new models. This is happening in almost every industry throughout the world. Those concepts have been abundant in the data center industry, whether looking at water waste, subsea cables, carbon emissions or being applied to staff retention/ recruiting and community involvement.
It should not be surprising that sustainability is emerging as a key focus, given that according to the World Economic Forum, the top four global risks were all climate-related: 1) extreme weather climate action failure, 2) natural disasters, 3) biodiversity loss and 4) man-made environmental disasters. In recent years, the tech industry has also had to adapt to the growing threat to their operations posed by the California wildfires.
After wildfires and pandemics, the lesson has been learned across the world to implement plans for global risks, whether for a local business or an international enterprise. This should cover a plan for how to best support an organization’s data. With the role data plays in the world these days, the need is even greater to mitigate any operational interruption due to a foreseeable global risk.
Furthermore, data can play a role in helping to mitigate further climate damage. Data helps companies and countries alike to better understand their future, as it relates to global warming, as well as to develop climate-friendly legislation and opportunities for a greener planet, tomorrow. When it comes to creating a strategy for any type of organization’s data, it has to include: capturing, connecting, analyzing and the contextualization of data. All of these components are needed in order to then create actionable information from the data to help an organization with better-and greener-decision making.