CyrusOne - Water Positive

  • 10.12.2022
  • Environmental Leader

By improving energy efficiency at its facilities and purchasing more renewable sources, data center operator CyrusOne says it plans to become net neutral by 2030, a decade ahead of its original target.

The company says it will also explore zero-carbon alternatives to traditional backup diesel generators and build on achievements such as using 100% renewable energy across its European operations since 2021. CyrusOne has more than 50 facilities worldwide.

In addition to reaching carbon neutrality, the company also plans to decrease its water consumption in vulnerable regions. Overall, CyrusOne says that its original net-zero target is not enough to meet growing sustainability demands in the industry.

Data centers are energy- and water-intensive operations, which has led many companies and developers to try and find ways to make sustainable improvements. Data centers alone are estimated to use 1% of the world’s electricity. Successfully managing those impacts requires a strategy that covers an organization’s entire operational footprint, according to a report from Uptime Institute.

The green data center market is expected to grow by 20% a year and be valued at nearly $304 billion by 2031, according to a report from Allied Market Research. Equinix issued $1.2 billion in green bonds this year primarily to address data center sustainability, for one example of the resources put behind sustainability efforts of the operations.

For its part, CyrusOne has goals to be net-positive water in high-stress areas by 2030, and use 100% water-free cooling in new data centers. One example of success is a data center in Texas that used the cooling system and reduced its water consumption by 4.6 million gallons.