CORDIS - EU research results

Datacenter EURECA Project

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - EURECA (Datacenter EURECA Project)

Reporting period: 2016-09-01 to 2018-02-28

The EURECA project tackles the lack of knowledge and awareness on how to identify and procure environmentally sound and sustainable data centres. The work will encompass solutions for pre-commercial procurement (PCP) and procurement of innovative solutions (PPI). This will be achieved by consolidating recognised and emerging benchmark criteria into an easy-to-use tool that can be deployed and used by non-experts. EURECA will recommend an improvement roadmap indicating the procurement options(s) to reduce energy consumption, make efficiencies and minimise the environmental footprint. Key criteria will be presenting the Cost-Benefit analysis, covering the lifecycle of the data centre and the environmental impact. The project will strengthen business cases by presenting training and advisory resources on how to establish the options with both technical and commercially neutral information, without prejudice. These options include, as appropriate, to perform detailed studies on investing in existing staff, refitting facilities, consolidation actions, new builds, or outsourcing – or specific combinations or subsets of these. The resources include RFI, ITT or RFP templates, technical & environmental data directories and a case study catalogue, structured along the procurement workflow. The ultimate goal is to enable procurement teams to choose environmentally sound buying options whilst producing true and robust cost-benefit visibility to enable successful triggering of tenders. To ensure efficient use of the project’s developments, we will deliver a coherent set of targeted and efficient training components, developed throughout the project that supports the use of the EURECA tool and its resources. The consortium’s existing comprehensive liaisons to European and international standards committees and industry groups will ensure the EURECA programme is a “living” resource that is sustainable, interactive and able to reflect the latest developments.
The EURECA project has reviewed the majority of the global data centre related standards, frameworks and guidelines, as well as the current procurement practices for data centres in the public sector. The EURECA Team identified and reviewed over 100 relevant publications and conducted interviews with public sector organisations in 3 Tier 1 (UK, Germany, The Netherlands) countries. The first element identified that many of these standards cover the same topics relating to data centre design and construction, and that some of the most regularly cited standards were superfluous to the design and build of green and sustainable data centres and services. The second element identified that public sector bodies are unaware of many of the industry standards and fail to include them in their tender documentation, leading to facilities that whilst achieving a core purpose (that is of the provision of digital services) they are often failing to recognise the more innovative, energy efficient and sustainable elements that can result in long term energy savings, lower TCO’s and to be more environmentally friendly.

The project also produced a Directory of EU Public Sector Procurers itself (which is implemented within the DCA platform). The Directory is part of the Public Sector Special Interest Group online ‘members’ platform which is to be (further) developed and expanded under WP3. An accompanying document provides a general description of this online platform and the various activities available to the SIG members, providing a general overview of how the Directory is realized. It also provides some insights into the current plans for further development of the broader online PS SIG platform.

EURECA aims to provide dissemination and communication plan with activity guidelines for the project. The plan identifies the main public results to be disseminated throughout the project, the major stakeholders and targets groups to focus on, the available dissemination channels and instruments and the specific dissemination activities to be expected and employed by EURECA partners.
EURECA will help the EU public sector organisations gain a concise, tailored decision matrix for the public sector procurement of either green data centre new build, retro fitting or outsourcing that addresses the need for fast evolving technological solutions supporting PCP and PPI.
It will support the development and implementation of sustainable renewable powered data centres within the EU, and the increased skills, knowledge and awareness of public sector procurement teams in order to tackle data center energy efficiency and contribute more to EU 2020 targets.
The project also helps in building an uptake amongst public sector organisations in procurement strategies to reduce data centre energy wastage and improvements in energy efficiency, and will propose a method to measure environmental performance of data centres and the basis to consider policy measures.
More precisely, EURECA, seeking a contribution of 1.5 million Euro, aims to trigger the launch of public tenders for the purchase of sustainable energy products, buildings or services resulting in savings of more than 37,5 GWh per year of energy savings and/or renewable energy production. EURECA will improve effectiveness of EU good practice sharing policy by assisting 100 data centre facilities in becoming approved registrars of the EU Code of Conduct for Data Centres. And the DC EURECA knowledge sharing and training activities will increase the skills of at least 500 public procurers and the market uptake of innovative solutions through lead patronage of at least 50 public bodies.