The benefits of cloud computing are well known among those who have some kind of interaction with the IT industry. Lower costs, lower investment risks, increased availability and lower time to market are just some of the aspects that have made the cloud one of the biggest technology trends of the past decade. However, very little has yet been discussed about the impact that the cloud can have on the environment.
Fortunately, Microsoft and WSP conducted a research in 2018 that shed light on the subject. The methodologically used on the research was supervised by Stanford University experts.
In the study, called “The Carbon Benefits of Cloud Computing:a Study of the Microsoft Cloud“, a comprehensive approach to the subject was made, including topics such as raw material extraction and equipment assembly, equipment transport, energy consumption and treatment and disposal of equipment at the end of its useful life.
The study concluded that Microsoft’s cloud is up to 93% more energy efficient and can generate up to 98% less carbon emissions than traditional data centers. Although efficiency and improvements in carbon emissions vary depending on the service being evaluated, the research found a significant improvement in energy efficiency and a noticeable reduction in carbon emissions in all cases considered.
These savings were attributed to four key factors:
- IT Operational Efficiency: commercial cloud services can operate more efficiently than smaller on-premises local implementations with large-scale dynamic provisioning and multitenant architecture.
- Equipment Efficiency: Microsoft adapts its hardware components on a large scale to find the most efficient ways to meet the specific needs of its services.
- Data Center Infrastructure Efficiency: Advanced applied technologies significantly reduce electricity requirements for lighting, cooling, and power conditioning.
- Renewable energy: Demand for consolidated electricity creates the potential for large-scale purchases of green energy that would otherwise be unfeasible.
From Bankingly we reaffirm our commitment to a path towards financial inclusion that respects our communities and the environment. Working with suppliers and partners who share this vision is key to continuing to walk that path. In that context, from our conception as a technology company we operate in Microsoft Azure, so we are pleased that such a close and important partner can show these results.
If you want to know more, you can download the full report here.