Rarely a day goes by without an apocalyptic warning about the impending destruction of the planet due to carbon emissions and climate change. The message of ‘adapt or die’ is stark and yet there seems to be a distinct lack of action on the issue – something that will hopefully change as a result of the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26). 

   Love her or loathe her, Greta Thunberg’s scepticism over global leaders’ promises to address the climate emergency, dismissing them as ‘blah, blah, blah’, is something shared by many who are concerned about this issue. It’s also fair to say that the data centre sector has its own fair share of ‘blah, blah, blah’ when it comes to sustainability and reducing the carbon emissions it produces.    

What is encouraging, however, is the growing awareness of the need for all the constituent parts of an IT network infrastructure to be as environmentally efficient as possible. Sometimes this can be from unlikely sources and claims about optical fibre’s ability to create more environmentally friendly network infrastructures than copper based systems are frequently made. To discuss whether they really stack up, this month’s Question Time asks a panel of experts to explain what features make this technology more sustainable.    

Also in this issue, we have special features dedicated to pre-terminated systems and UPS and power management. Experts from Panduit, Siemon and Centiel have provided excellent articles on topics including why the use of pre-terminated cabling is growing, why less information can lead to more interpretation when it comes to uninterruptible power supply (UPS) technology, and the benefits of breakout optical fibre assemblies in data centre architecture designs. John Booth of Carbon3IT also examines the EU Code of Conduct for Data Centres (Energy Efficiency) best practices as they relate to power management.    

Rob Shepherd