Data Center Sustainability Trends - image of data center machinery

What Data Center Sustainability Trends Will Shape the Industry in 2024?

Christen Martines | February 12, 2024

Christopher Tozz,, January 19, 2024

Investments in data center sustainability have gained so much traction that they may almost no longer feel like a trend. For years, making data centers more sustainable has been a priority not just because it helps meet ESG goals, but also because sustainability enhancements go hand-in-hand with lower energy bills and improved data center reliability.

Yet, as we head into a new year, data center operators are continuing to experiment with new ways to increase sustainability. Here’s a rundown of data center sustainability trends to watch in 2024 and beyond:

1. A Move Away From Carbon Offsets

For years, the cheapest and easiest way of attempting to reduce the carbon footprints of data centers was to purchase carbon offsets. Carbon offsets allow businesses to offset the carbon they emit through their operations by funding green initiatives elsewhere.

Carbon offsets have long been central to the ability of large tech companies to claim carbon-neutral status. Increasingly, however, the carbon offset practice is facing criticism. Its detractors point out that offsets don’t always have the positive impact that their purchasers claim. Plus, they give deep-pocketed companies an “easy way out” when it comes to sustainability that is not available to smaller businesses whose infrastructure may actually be more sustainable, but whose total carbon emissions are higher because they can’t afford to buy offsets as a means of reaching carbon neutrality.

In 2024, expect growing scrutiny of carbon offsets and increased pressure on data center operators to move away from the practice.

2. Investment in Green AI Infrastructure

Supporting AI workloads is a priority for many data centers today, given the widespread interest in training and deploying AI models. However, because AI training is an especially compute-intensive process, it can hamper efforts to improve data center sustainability.

For that reason, we’ll likely see more investment over the coming year in so-called “green AI infrastructure” within data centers. For example, more data centers may become home to custom processors that are designed to reduce the energy consumed by AI workloads.

Strategies like these will be essential for businesses that want to embrace AI without letting it become a climate catastrophe on par with Bitcoin.

To access the full article, click here.

Latest News

Phone: (888) 625-6116

Fax: (508) 247-9300