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Asia Pacific calls for ICT sustainability strategy

Posted: 31 Aug 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:ICT sustainability? energy efficiency? energy management?

A new poll conducted by Schneider Electrics IT Business has revealed that more than three quarters of government CIO and IT managers in the Asia Pacific realize the need for a dedicated office to plan and execute an overall ICT sustainability strategy.

As an effort to explore Asia Pacific's attitudes towards energy efficiency, the poll results underscore the importance of spreading awareness of energy management amid the high environmental and financial cost of energy throughout this region.

Remarkably, of the 32 percent of respondents who said that cost and/or availability of electricity will have a significant impact on their data centers ability to support operations over the next three years, more than 70 percent were from developing countries?India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Philippines and Malaysia. Representatives from the more developed Asia Pacific countries polled? China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Australia and Singapore?were less concerned with the supply of energy, noting that it may only affect a limited number of departments or have a minimal impact.

Its important that government decisions makers understand that the cost of not solving this problem is significantly higher than the solution, added Benedict Soh, IT Business VP at Schneider Electric Singapore. All government CIOs and ICT managers now realize that this cost burden is unsustainable for their country ? it diminishes the funds available for investment in productivity, expansion of output, and ultimately affects their overall global competitively, he said.

A majority of governments recognize that the data center is a key focus area for reducing energy consumption, with only 20 percent of respondents not focused in this area. For building a new data center or expanding existing operations, energy efficiency was considered a high priority by 72 percent of respondents. The top initiatives included server virtualization and consolidation, policy implementation and cooling system re-design.

In Singapore, there has been increased emphasis on green ICT?the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore has partnered other government agencies and industry to develop a Singapore Standard for Green Data Centers. As data centers are extremely energy-intensive, with electricity accounting for more than 50 percent of the operating expenditure in a typical data center, the Green Data Center Standard will target to help companies reduce the energy consumption and operating costs of DCs and enhance their competitiveness. This is especially relevant for Singapore and Asia Pacific as data center services business here is growing rapidly, with many multinational corporations establishing their data center facilities in Singapore.

With the global rise of energy prices and the looming threat of an energy crisis, energy is becoming more than just expensive ?its a liability, said Soh. Its important for all Asia Pacific government agencies to recognize the urgency of implementing energy efficient technology, and an intelligent energy management data center solution is one of the first steps to reducing risk and controlling costs, he added.

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