“We want our customers to know that achieving zero carbon emissions is not our ultimate goal, it’s just part of the journey. We want to continue to improve the energy efficiency of our data centers, generate renewable energy on site and integrate circular economy concepts into the life cycle of our IT equipment and our operations. Discussions on corporate climate change usually focus on customers, regulations and cost-cutting efforts, which are of course important. But sometimes it is easy to forget that climate change is inextricably linked and affects people, health and equality. – Randip Sangera, Head of Sustainability at IONOS
Founded more than 30 years ago to make information easy to understand and use, IONOS is the largest hosting company in Europe with an extensive portfolio, ranging from website building packages to a solid IaaS business offering.
We recently contacted the company’s head of sustainable development, Randip Sangera, to learn more about IONOS ‘initiatives and values for sustainability and why they go beyond its efforts to tackle climate change.
“IN IONOS, we recognize different elements of sustainability and have defined four pillars – planet, people, digital responsibility and customer – that are intertwined and must be targeted to sustain a thriving business that has a positive impact on the planet and people, ”says Sangera. “As a provider of cloud services and solutions, reducing emissions related to our energy use – and committing to zero carbon emissions by 2050 – is crucial for the planet and also includes supporting the circular economy through maximizing the repair, reuse, and recycling of our equipment. ”
Sangera explains that the other three pillars are equally applicable. The company strengthens its commitment to people through its efforts for diversity and inclusion, supports its digital responsibility with the highest standards of data confidentiality and information security and is focused on the customer with a relentless commitment to their success and satisfaction.
“We believe that as a business, it is crucial to look at sustainability broadly in this way, because you cannot succeed in any area for a long time if the other three pillars are not in place,” Sangera added.
It seems that the IONOS approach works. The company’s 10 state-of-the-art data centers – including its vast facility in Lenexa, Kansas (which has a capacity for more than 40,000 servers), as well as other facilities in France, Germany, Spain and the United Kingdom – all operate at 100 % renewable electricity
In particular, they are powering an increasing number of IONOS private cloud deployments. Stable offer, based on VMware technologies, can be used as an iron, special cloud or integrated in a multi-cloud deployment.
Energy consumption at other facilities, including the US headquarters in Philadelphia and the European headquarters in Karlsruhe, Germany, is being treated with carbon offsets. In 2021, 99.4% of all energy used in the company’s data centers comes from renewable sources other than emergency power.
Sanghera is especially proud of the company’s cooperation with AfB.
“As a result of our long-standing relationship with AfB, an organization that creates jobs for people with disabilities through green IT practices, we have been able to reuse and recycle 450 tonnes of IT equipment in Germany in the last three years alone,” he said. . “This not only contributes to a circular economy, avoids carbon emissions and avoids the use of water, but also provides a positive social impact for people.”
Sanghera notes that IONOS sees its success so far as just the beginning. In 2018, it introduced a certified energy management system (ISO 50001) for all its data centers, which are managed directly. The company’s energy management team sets annual energy efficiency targets for each facility and has reduced absolute energy consumption by 12.84% since 2018.
Efforts are also being made to use data science and machine learning to optimize cooling and to use innovations such as evaporative cooling. A new data center, which is being built in the UK this year, is also expected to be at least 20% more efficient than its predecessor.
“Digitalisation can make a significant contribution to the green economy, but the whole value chain must be taken into account,” Sangera said. “VMware’s Zero Carbon Committed initiative makes an important contribution and puts IT on the agenda.”
Learn more about IONOS and its partnership with VMware here.