As I recently posted, the SVLG Data Center Efficiency Summit on Oct 14th, hosted at Brocade in San Jose was an excellent event. Having co-chaired the demonstration program and putting on the summit, I may be biased, but ask any of the 500+ attendees and I think you’ll hear fantastic reviews of the event, with all presentations by end-users of their case studies or research projects. There were no commercial presentations. We had a VC panel, IT sessions, cooling sessions, air-economization, detailed discussion of the lack of contamination and corrosion from outside air, containment, containerized data centers, new metrics and standards for data centers (LEED, Title 24, Revised PUE), etc.
Some folks have asked for me to post my opening and closing remarks, which I am doing here. These are my opening remarks to the full audience at Brocade:
“I have been so fortunate to co-chair this program for a second year. A program based upon a single idea that if we collaborate, we all help each other run and operate our data centers more efficiently. In this forum we educate each other from our own experiences on how we have reduced costs and energy use. Following my own mantra, saving energy is always saving money; this is especially true in a data center.
Reducing energy use has the most economic impact and net carbon reduction–a NegaWatt as Amory Lovins has termed it–for a kWh saved is more efficient and at lower cost than the cleanest kWh generated.
While we can locate data centers in Iceland, Northern Canada Reno, NV with 100% renewable energy supply, the location of our data centers is usually driven by many requirements. While you’ll see case studies today of data centers working to create zero carbon data centers, companies have a fiduciary responsibility to control costs and reducing energy use provides the greatest cost savings and environmental impact reductions for our growing user needs.
With an estimated 17 million servers in the US in 2009 (IDC), every month these servers support nearly 2 billion search users, over 500 million shopping and approaching a billion social networking users; 100 million daily tweets, nearly all of our financial transactions, all of our blogging, and becoming the source for news, knowledge, travel, gaming, entertainment, and sharing and archiving our precious family photos.
The estimated 2.6 million data centers in the US are the hubs of our Internet, and Internet traffic grew a whopping 62% in 2010 after growing 74% in 2009. International Internet Bandwidth has grown over 10 times since 2002. The majority of the growth is from India, the Middle East and Eastern Europe with each growing over 100% per year. And we’re just beginning to accommodate cloud and mobile computing.
While our industry has shown staggering growth, we have become more efficient in what I call the efficiency renaissance of the last few years. We are providing these services at far greater efficiency than methods used only a decade ago. Amazon reports that they can now accommodate twice the servers on the same power draw of before. A recent EPA report shows average US PUE is about 2–which is half the infrastructure usage of average world PUEs of about 3. Google has reported a data center fleet average PUE of 1.2 and I’ve been so fortunate to work on several data centers designs over the last year with annual average energy PUEs below 1.1.
While our best designs will reduce infrastructure energy to 5% of the server load, you’ll see excellent results today with existing data center case studies from simple changes in temperature and humidity settings and air containment. As our infrastructure energy uses a tiny fraction of the energy of our hardware, our focus will shift to reducing the energy use of our IT equipment, as you’ll see today in case studies of software and other IT efficiency projects.
EL Insights reports that our efficiency renaissance is expected to increase the US green data center market from about $4 billion today to nearly $14 billion in 2015. You’ll hear examples during our VC panel of what will lead future energy savings with new processors, networking and memory hardware, as well as new storage, software and lighting technologies.
We have 18 end-user presented efficiency projects and several detailed studies and discussions on various subjects to help you further improve your company’s data center efficiency. I hope you’ll pay close attention to this shared knowledge and experiences of our industry experts and participate in the question and answer periods following each session. If we continue to collaborate, innovate and further improve the energy efficiency of our data centers, we directly improve the efficiency of the Internet and the world’s economy. This will help us avoid energy challenges of the future.
We don’t need to look far back to see the value of our efficiency efforts. For it was in 2001 that the California Energy Crisis hit, and Exodus Communications my employer and the creator of the leasable data center industry was being accused as the cause of the crisis. Our energy efficiency achievements trumped these inaccurate accusations. I also worked with the SVLG to resurrect the Energy Committee that was the original founding purpose of the SVLG in the 1970’s by David Packard of HP fame to address our State’s energy challenges. My peers and I led voluntary energy curtailments to avoid countless more rolling blackouts, and Carl Guardino and I led a group of California elected leaders along with the Governor and the CEOs of nearly every major Silicon Valley company to address these energy issues. Just as we tackled these energy issues then, it is again energy efficiency leading the way with Silicon Valley companies driving the innovation of this efficiency renaissance and the SVLG driving the policy. Through this summit, Carl and the SVLG are part of this continuing effort to advance the efficiency of our Internet industries. Please help me provide Carl a warm welcome as the CEO of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group.”
Here are my closing remarks, which I am posting to make a clear recognition of those that gave their heart and time to help create this wonderful event…to them, thank you. To our attendees of the event, thank you. Together, we all gain by working together to reduce energy use and costs.
“This event and efficiency program would not exist if it were not for the vision and leadership of Dale Sartor and Bill Tschudi of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory since the inaugural 2008 Summit. Under their direction, LBNL has led the development of this program with funding from the California Energy Commission and its PIER program, which funded some of the project management and some of these technology demonstrations.
As my favorite business school professor always, said “the most prepared team always wins.” The Silicon Valley Leadership Group, particularly Bob Hines and staff Anne Smart, Samantha James, Colin Buckner and others ensured that the preparations were in place for our event today. Thank you.
Thank you Brocade, our host for the 2010 Data Center Efficiency Summit, especially John Noh, Rebekah Johnson and Brocade’s Events planning team.
Thank you to my co-chairs, I could not have pulled this event off without any of you: Tim Crawford, Ray Pfeifer, Kelly Aaron and Brian Brogan. And also our volunteer Summit Planning Team of Subodh Bapat, Henry Wong, Deborah Grove, Mukesh Khattar, Patricia Nealon, Ralph Renne, Joyce Dickerson, Zen Kishimoto and Chris Noland.
And most importantly, kudos to all of our speakers, moderators and panel members for sharing your knowledge, vision and ideas; we all have gained from your selfish tutelage. Let me know what you’d like to see for a future summit. Now go save some energy and let’s all have a drink together to celebrate today’s success!”