Data Centers Are Going Green While Saving Green

How Hydroelectric Power Provides The Best Of Both Worlds

If you’ve ever stood along the shore listening to the persistent crashing of waves during high tide or marveled at the beauty of nature at the foot of a cascading waterfall, you’ve experienced the raw power that is water in motion.

Among the most notable innovations in history, humans have been harnessing the power of water to perform work for thousands of years, dating back to ancient Greece. This form of energy, known as hydropower, has grown and evolved over the course of time, resulting in modern-day hydroelectric power plants that harness the energy of flowing water to create electricity.

Generating roughly 10 percent of the energy used throughout the United States, hydroelectric power plants can be found at major rivers, creeks and waterfalls across the nation, providing natural and renewable energy at low production costs. Of these facilities, the Grand Coulee Dam on Washington’s Columbia River is the largest hydroelectric power producer in the United States with a total generating capacity of 6,809 megawatts of energy.

To get the same peak output, one would need 3,400 2MW wind turbines or 17,000 acres of photovoltaic panels, yet the Grand Coulee Dam can continue generating power even when there is no wind or sun. While other sources of renewable energy certainly have their advantages, hydroelectricity also offers the key advantage of being able to align electricity generation more closely with the supported loads.

Total Hydropower Generation in the U.S.

The abundance of hydropower in Washington State provides some of the lowest and most predictable electricity rates in the country. As a clean, renewable and reliable energy resource, hydropower significantly lowers operating expenses for Washington data centers, keeping monthly costs down while minimizing environmental impact. This green energy source is ideal for running sustainable data centers which drastically reduces environmental impact.

Indirect Evaporative Cooling

Washington State’s relatively cool, dry climate also provides abundant opportunity for energy efficient data center operation, extending economizer hours and making evaporative cooling very effective. Compared to many other parts of the Western United States, the water required for evaporative cooling is plentiful in Washington.

Green Data Centers

Sabey’s dedication to minimizing its carbon footprint and providing customers with affordable energy costs is reflected in the design of SDC Quincy – its Quincy, WA data center facility. Achieving Energy Star certification with a score of 100 for three consecutive years due to its extremely energy efficient design and operation, this facility utilizes inexpensive hydroelectricity to power its IT equipment and auxiliary needs.

In an effort to remain environmentally conscious, SDC Quincy customers aren’t forced to decide between going green and saving some green when it comes to data storage and energy consumption, as existing hydroelectric power resources provide a source for electricity that is both renewable and cost-effective. If you’d like to learn more about the benefits of leasing data center space at SDC Quincy, contact us today.

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