How Data Centres Can Help Lower Your Carbon Footprint

Green business has become an issue of greater concern over recent years. With the pressure growing to do business responsibly and help to protect the planet, many businesses are looking for efficient and affordable ways to work more sustainably.

However, eco-friendly business practices aren't always a top priority. Other matters can take precedence, leaving issues such as energy efficiency at the bottom of the pile.

Making Energy Efficiency a Priority

Fortunately, at SafeHosts we have made energy efficiency a priority and can help business owners who want to make greener choices too. By partnering with a data centre with a strong focus on energy efficiency, business owners can lower the carbon footprint of their own businesses.


Calculating Energy Efficiency with PUE

Measuring just how energy-efficient a business is can be challenging. There are various ways this might be achieved and measuring Power Usage Effectiveness or PUE is one of the options available.

PUE is expressed as a ratio of the total amount of energy consumed by a data facility and the amount of energy consumed only by computer hardware.

PUE = Total Facility Power / IT Equipment Power

Efficiency PUE
Very Inefficient 3.00
Inefficient 2.50
Average 1.59
Efficient 1.20
Very Efficient 1.10


The best PUE that can be achieved is 1, which means that only the energy needed for the customer's hardware and the facility's own IT infrastructure is being consumed.


"SafeHosts has a PUE of 1.16, which is below the industry average of 1.59 and plans to reduce to below 1"


The data centre industry as a whole is improving too. In 2007, the worldwide average was 2.5 but it has been declining since then, except for a rise in 2019.

Advances in technology and best practices have made it possible to get closer to a PUE of 1 than ever before, whereas it was previously thought to be practically impossible. In general, a PUE of 1.2 or below is considered to be very efficient.

PUE was first published as a global standard of energy efficiency for data centres in 2016. Since then, some significant improvements have been made in what's possible with energy efficiency for data centres.

PUE can be a useful measure of how efficient a data centre is, although there are a few things to watch out for. For example, it's important to ensure a data centre is honest about its real PUE. It's also necessary to take climate into account, as data centres located in warmer climates will have larger cooling requirements and therefore naturally higher energy consumption in order to operate efficiently.

Data centres located in places with more ambient temperatures, such as the UK or Nordic countries, can achieve a lower PUE more easily because there is less need for cooling.

Additionally, PUE should be considered along with other factors that can affect or demonstrate energy efficiency. These other factors can help to deliver a more complete picture of how energy efficient a data centre really is.

Why Use an Energy-Efficient Data Centre?

Partnering with a data centre with a good PUE is a smart idea for any business. It provides a way for businesses to lower their own carbon footprint and become more energy efficient without having to really do anything themselves. The data centre does all of the work for you, making an effort to operate as efficiently as possible by reducing their energy use for both their own IT systems and your hardware.


An energy-efficient data centre can help your business to save money too. Data centre costs were once largely based on square footage required for hardware but energy usage is now a significant part of the costs incurred. By choosing an energy-efficient data centre, your business can reduce your costs while also making a more environmentally friendly choice.

SafeHosts makes an effort to keep energy consumption as low as possible. One of the steps that we take is using outside temperatures to aid cooling, which reduces the need for mechanical cooling. Geography is one of the most important factors to consider when choosing a colocation data centre. It's important to consider if you want to control costs and also ensure your data centre is close by, but it also makes a difference to what's possible regarding energy efficiency.

Intelligent Floor Tiles

Another move that we have made here at SafeHosts is to design our own variable-flow intelligent floor tiles. This helps us to mitigate overheating in server rooms. We also designed and built a containerised EV charging solution to charge vehicles off-grid using renewable energy. We are always looking for new ways to innovate in different areas, including managing energy efficiency.

Colocation is a Scalable Option

When you use colocation hosting, you benefit from a solution that is scalable and flexible. Using only the resources that your business requires not only helps you to save money but also ensures that no more energy than you need is used too. You can size up or down the amount of space that you require for your servers when you need to and avoid unnecessary expenses and energy consumption.

How Data Centres Are Achieving Energy Efficiency

Data centres around the world are taking big steps to help improve the energy efficiency of something that has often been regarded as not very energy efficient at all. Some of the largest companies have become more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly. For example, Google uses seawater from the Gulf of Finland to cool its servers at the Google data centre in Hamina.

Facebook has a data centre on the edge of the arctic circle in Sweden. As cooling is one of the major reasons for high energy needs in data centres, solutions to cooling needs are some of the best ways to make data centres more energy-efficient and help data customers to make their businesses greener too.

You can lower your business's carbon footprint by partnering with a data centre like SafeHosts. Our low PUE of between 1.10 and 1.20, on average, is just one indication that we take energy efficiency seriously for ourselves and our customers.

Find out more about how our data centre based in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire can help your business by getting in touch.