The University of St Andrews has won a top award for the green design and performance of a new computer data centre which is helping to reduce the institution’s carbon footprint – and saving £65k a year on its electricity bills.
St Andrews is the first UK public-sector organisation to achieve a Gold Award from the British Computer Society under the Certified Energy Efficient Datacentre Award (CEEDA) scheme, an international assessment based awards programme which recognises a commitment to energy efficiency and the reduction of carbon emissions.
Built at a cost of £2.4 million, St Andrews’ new data centre was opened in 2011 on the site of former squash courts in Butts Wynd in a conservation area in central St Andrews.
A joint project by the University’s IT Services and Estates units, the centre had to adhere to strict planning and noise restrictions. It’s fitted with a special acoustic shield and was designed with an old-style slate roof to blend in with its historic surroundings.
The centre uses only energy procured from renewable sources and in its first year of operation has saved £65,000 on power costs and reduced the University’s carbon output by 375 tonnes.
Around 30% of the electricity consumed by the 600-year-old University is used to power ICT equipment, most of which runs 24/7.
Steve Watt, the University of St Andrews’ Chief Information Officer said:
“We are delighted to have achieved the gold standard in our BCS CEEDA assessment. Being the only UK educational establishment to achieve this is a very positive reflection on the skills, expertise, and professionalism of all of the team within IT Services at the University of St Andrews.”
Martyn Lambert, Director at the British Computing Society said:
“I am delighted that we are able to accredit University of St Andrews’ data centre with the highest award possible in our CEEDA scheme. I am particularly impressed with the University’s dedication to energy efficiency best practice within the data centre environment and its use towards its overall carbon reduction goals.”
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