Reducing PUE to meet Singapore’s New Data Center Guidelines

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Ever increasing operational costs in the data center are forcing many to consider how electricity is the top contributing factor. This, along with new Green Data Center standards in Singapore calls for an assessment of the data center to understand its power usage effectiveness (PUE).

At a recent OpenGov briefing, in which Schneider Electric participated, delegates from Singapore’s top government agencies and educational institutions came together to discuss the importance of energy efficiency, share their perspectives on key data center issues and discover better practices as they seek to transform and conform.

Top Challenge

When those in attendance were asked what challenges they faced in their data centers, the majority (47%) cited aging infrastructure. Behind that, 29% said cost of operations.

Until recently, there had not been much attention given to energy efficiency or rising costs for data centers here, as many organizations were financially sound and other, issues were deemed more critical (like aging infrastructure). One delegate explained that finding an effective cooling solution was a much bigger challenge, which demanded his focus.

New Mandate

However, with the introduction of the BCA-IDA mandate to bring down PUE to 2.2 by FY 2016, the focus has shifted to compliance. Polling of the delegates revealed that, on average, only 45% have baselined their PUE. Yet, interestingly, nearly 30% said they are compliant with government regulations/guidelines.

This somewhat contradictory data reveals the need for a better understanding of the regulations and ways to meet them. Plus, having to meet mandates is certainly a compelling case for change, but knowing why the mandate exists in the first place is nearly as important.

There needs to be a higher level of education for all this to be clear. Fortunately, on average, 45% of the delegates polled said they were seeking the help of experts to create an organized and clear path in the process of streamlining efficiency.

The Right Path

As we guide agencies down this path, supply them with the relevant information, right knowledge, tools and solutions to migrate and implement green data centers, they will be better equipped for transformation and ready to meet the mandates set by BCA-IDA.

Tradeoff tools such as our Data Center Efficiency – Improve Your PUE and Virtualization Energy Costs calculators can help with baselining. White Paper 158, Guidance for Calculation of Efficiency (PUE) in Data Centers, looks deeper into the topic.

The changes toward better data center energy efficiency being made today are bringing Singapore ahead in its journey to becoming a true data center hub and smart nation of the world.

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