Report Reveals New Model to Help the Global Data Center Industry Unlock the Full Economic Value of Data Center Hardware While Optimizing Sustainability
SILICON VALLEY, Calif., May 12, 2020 — ITRenew, the global leader in Circular Cloud and data center transformation, today announced its first Data Center Impact Report “The Financial & Sustainability Case for Circularity.” Building from extensive market research, expert interviews, and proprietary data sets derived from collaboration with the world’s leading hyperscalers, ITRenew conducted a full lifecycle analysis for rack-scale open hardware solutions inclusive of both operational and embodied carbon impact. This comprehensive approach makes it possible, for the first time, to accurately calculate the aggregate lifetime-value potential of data center equipment; and to quantify the financial and environmental impact of business decisions throughout the manufacturing, primary use, re-use and post-use phases of that technology. The result is a detailed Circular Data Center Model that businesses can utilize now to significantly improve upon wasteful and financially disadvantageous deploy-and-dispose behavior pervasive in data centers today.
The research also disproves the myth that financial success and environmental responsibility are mutually exclusive. Extensive analysis proves that hardware circularity – keeping assets in their highest utility for as long as possible – can have significant transformative effects on business models, revenue growth and market access across the data center ecosystem. The data shows that not only does it potentially create nearly $50 billion in new financial opportunities annually for the largest hyperscale players in the market, but also democratizes access and opens up a host of new economic and societal benefits by making premium technology available to, and affordable for, the broader ecosystem.
Data center growth has been explosive over recent years – and so has the amount of data center waste. Even with an active global campaign to reduce greenhouse gases, emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the digital environment in Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries have risen by 450m tons since 2013, according to Shift Project. Worse still, since 2000, e-waste amounts have grown from 20 million to 50 million tonnes per year; by 2021 this figure will surpass 52m tonnes, and is on pace reach a staggering 120m tonnes annually by 2050, according to a 2019 report from the Platform for Accelerating the Circular Economy (PACE) and the UN E-Waste Coalition. If these trends continue, the Semiconductor Industry Association projects that computer power consumption is forecasted to exceed global energy production by 2040.
ITRenew’s Data Center Impact Report reveals that the adoption of circularity is already having a significant and material impact for data center owners, enterprises and the broader IT ecosystem adopters on a worldwide scale. Conservative estimates show that if this continues and the global IT hardware industry utilizes this approach wholesale, there is the potential to cut total cost of ownership (TCO) of data center hardware by 24% to 31% and slash the greenhouse gas impact of the data center sector by nearly 25%.
Ali Fenn, president of ITRenew, says: “Keeping assets in their highest utility for as long as possible involves creating secondary and tertiary loops of life for IT hardware that deliver much higher proven lifetime value and lower total cost of ownership for the entire ecosystem. Our goal in developing and championing the adoption of a Circular Data Center Model for the IT industry is to prove that maximizing lifetime value, driving sustainability and tackling data center e-waste on a global scale isn’t some utopian vision, it is real and possible today. The scale of our industry, and the outsized impact we have, makes this both an opportunity and an imperative.”
Fenn continued: “ITRenew offers alternative models to outdated linear paradigms and gives customers innovative solutions that deliver real benefits today, such as major advances in TCO and sustainability. Our proven track record for enabling the creation of new markets and the expansion of existing ones is why the world’s leading hyperscalers, service providers and enterprises maximize the lifetime value of their IT hardware – whether as hyperscale operators or global market users of circular equipment.”
The expansion in the number of data centers around the world has been driven by the monumental growth in the amount of data that is handled – in 2018 this amounted to 33ZB but by 2025 this is expected to reach 175ZB. In turn, this growth in data has been fueled by greater data collection and computation required for advanced analytics and machine learning (especially deep learning). On a physical level, this manifests itself as increased infrastructure in the form of “hyperscale” data centers – centers with the ability to scale rapidly to meet increases in demand – that enable flow, storage and availability for all users of such highly-connected and data-dependent services.
“It’s time to for the industry to adopt a new way of thinking about the economic and environmental value of data center technology and how that hardware is managed. To ITRenew that has meant creating new markets, business models and reuse pathways that lower total cost of ownership, keep technology out of the waste stream, and significantly reducing the demand for new materials, components and equipment for data centers,” said Aidin Aghamiri, CEO of ITRenew. “We are starting to witness a shift in long-held attitudes, where our industry is beginning to place a premium on technology reuse and eliminate the false tradeoffs between profitability and sustainability. With the introduction of our first State of the Global Circular Data Center Industry report, our goal is to provide the model and framework for any organization to optimize both the financial value and sustainability of these technologies.”
The full Financial & Sustainability Case for Circularity Report is available to download here.
ITRenew, the Circular Cloud leader, refuses to settle for a world that pits economic success against social good. We’ve replaced outdated deploy-and-dispose paradigms with solutions that keep IT assets in their highest utility for as long as possible. These innovative products and services create new loops of life, from the cloud to the edge, that unleash the technology’s full financial value and maximum sustainability potential. Our proven track record for creating new markets and expanding existing ones is why the world’s leading hyperscalers, service providers and enterprises work with us to revolutionize how their hardware is managed and deployed globally.
To learn more about ITRenew’s comprehensive portfolio of decommissioning and data security services, edge and component products and rack-scale compute and storage solutions, visit www.itrenew.com and follow ITRenew on LinkedIn and Twitter @ITRenewinc.