After the computer was founded, there has been no looking back in terms of technological advancement. We have made great breakthroughs and progress in the field of Information Technology, and the pace is still not slowing down. In fact, it is accelerating. The impact? More utility, ease, and services for consumers and more utility, ease, and revenue for businesses. But one other impact that is often overlooked is that on the environment. The power consumption of data storage centers and data processing equipment leads to the emission of greenhouse gases that are greatly harmful to the atmosphere.
Then came cloud technology to solve this major issue. Want to know how the cloud helps the environment? You are at the right place. Cloud reduces carbon footprints and prevents energy from getting wasted. It is estimated that by switching a single department of a large organization to cloud computing, 30k metric tons of carbon emission can be prevented within just five years. It is as if 6000 automobiles are taken off the road.
Almost all industries are dependent on high-carbon physical products for their operations. By hiring cloud services, organizations can switch those products with virtual equivalents that the cloud offers, resulting in much less carbon emission. For example, cinemas are involved in carbon emission, but with the on-demand video streaming services available on mobile phones, we can forego being a part of that carbon footprint.
For organizations, fewer physical products, equipment, and machinery mean lower energy consumption, lesser bills, less maintenance personnel, less time to operate and monitor the hardware and equipment, therefore, more cost-saving. This allows them to invest and focus more on their value-addition functions to generate more revenue. The reduction in physical equipment and machinery reduces e-waste as well. You also save huge amounts of paper, which is a major reason for the cutting down of trees. Cloud allows you to go paperless through electronic signatures and cloud storage.
Provides Better Infrastructure
Infrastructure includes all the physical assets of a company serving both its primary and secondary operations. Cloud services require high-quality and technologically advanced infrastructure to operate efficiently. If the traditional IT infrastructure is located on-premise, it can be treated by the organization’s IT professionals. But if a cloud server goes down, the companies will blame its inefficiency for the loss they bear. Therefore, cloud providers ensure the usage of highly efficient infrastructure.
The traditional public servers are limited and are usually really far off from their respective power supplies. On the other hand, public clouds are built as close to the facilities as possible so that they receive an uninterrupted and efficient power supply. This allows them to use less wattage, and the cost of transmitting electricity over long distances is saved.
Furthermore, the hardware setup of cloud servers ensures they do not get heated up. Better cooling and optimizing temperature, transmission, and other factors give way to less wastage, energy usage, and more productivity.
Assists Remote Working
The ways cloud benefits businesses seem to be infinite, and also how the cloud helps the environment. Organizations now are able to hire remote workers, freelance as well as permanent, thanks to cloud technology. Businesses now outsource whole departments, and it does not affect the efficiency of their operations. Hiring employees that can work from anywhere, anytime, without having to come to the office not only saves managerial and salary expenses but aids the environment as well. Fewer people in the office and fewer resources utilized mean less energy consumption and less carbon emission.
Reduces Energy Consumption
Data centers require heavy cooling for their excessive machinery and equipment. The hardware gets old quickly and adds to the global e-waste that causes significant amounts of pollution. The energy that data centers consume to get an uninterrupted power supply is a lot as their utilization rate is low and the wastage rate is high. All these factors cause the data centers in the United States to consume 1.8% of the total energy consumption of the country. 1.8% does not feel much? It is almost 73 billion kWh.
Cloud cuts down the energy consumption by 87% through efficient hardware and less wastage. The performance of the cloud servers exceeds that of the traditional servers, so it is a win-win for both the businesses and the environment.
Shifting to Renewable Energy Sources
Many cloud providers, including us, have been making huge strides to move towards renewable, sustainable energy sources, such as hydro, wind, solar, and geothermal powers. The electricity and energy produced using these sources are eco-friendly and helps bring down global warming levels. But what is more, is that cloud technology is encouraging organizations to migrate to these sources by helping them achieve these targets.
Through cloud technology, more renewable energy sources and options are being evaluated and researched, while shifting to one of the present ones can be made easy with the cloud’s assistance. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning components of cloud technology are helping greatly in this regard.
Increases Hardware Refreshing Speed
Replacements, repairs, and up-gradations are required in data centers as well as cloud servers. The cost, time, and energy consumption to refresh each differ considerably. Cloud servers are highly efficient in this regard, and traditional servers can cost a fortune in terms of money as well as time for simple refreshes.
Ease of upgradation is not just beneficial for cost-saving but for incorporation of upcoming modern technologies as well. With a fast refresh time, more frequent upgrades are made, and more energy is saved.
Conclusion to How Cloud Helps the Environment
The governments and business enterprises worldwide are growing more and more concerned over the risk the natural resources and environmental sustainability are currently at. The crisis is now being given the importance it deserved for decades. Individuals, public and private sectors, and governments are taking measures to prevent further environmental damage. How the cloud helps the environment should prompt all organizations and industries to adopt it so that we can fight the crisis stronger and together.