Commissioned by BSR’s Future of Internet Power collaborative initiative, this working paper presents best practices and exploratory concepts to help colocation data center (colo) owners and users address the challenges and opportunities to maximizing the use of renewable energy at colo facilities in the United States.

In 2010, data centers made up more than 2 percent of electricity usage in the United States, and while colo facility usage continues to grow, so do ambitious sustainability commitments by colo owners and users. Companies in the technology industry are prime users of colos, and there is growing interest to use renewable energy to power colo operations. This working paper intends to support the dialogue between colo owners and users as they seek ways to maximize reliable, affordable, and renewable power sources.

The Future of Internet Power is a group of leading technology companies that develop and promote best practices to maximize renewables at data centers; we envision an internet powered by 100 percent renewable energy.