The Net Zero Data Centre Summit was held on 1-2 February 2024 in Berlin, Germany. It brought together leading experts across the data centre industry. They discussed strategies and solutions for maximizing energy efficiency and minimizing carbon emissions. Organized by Future Bridge, the two-day summit provided an in-depth look at technologies, designs, and best practices that data centre owners and operators can leverage to reduce their environmental impact.

In this article, we will go through a recap of what the Net Zero Data Centre Summit was about, what in-depth topics were covered, and who the sponsors were adding value to the revolutionary event. So, let’s get started. 

What Did the Speakers Discuss About?

The Net Zero Data Centre Summit in Berlin convened experts across the industry. This is to discuss the latest technologies & strategies for sustainability. Let us look at the topics that the speaker uncovered:


Designation: Head of Strategy, GlobalConnect A/S

Luke Davies delved into an exhaustive examination of energy-efficient technologies. These are the ones tailored to meet the demands of modern data centres. He explored innovative designs aimed at sustaining an optimal data centre environment. This is while ensuring peak operational effectiveness. 


Designation: Chief Sustainability Officer, Green Mountain

Torkild Follaugh presented best-practice strategies geared towards reducing data centre energy consumption and maximizing efficiency. Furthermore, he discussed various approaches. It includes innovative data centre designs, strategies for peak operational effectiveness, and performance monitoring. Moreover, Follaugh highlighted the importance of boosting the use of green energy. The speaker also explored potential solutions like microgrids to enhance sustainability.


Designation: Senior Business Director Global / Energy Solutions, Exide Technologies – Bronze Sponsor

Serge Arbes focused on reducing cooling costs through optimized UPS battery sizing. He compared energy costs for data centres in 2018 versus 2023. Furthermore, the speaker discussed how battery dimensioning and lifetime can contribute to decreasing cooling expenses. Arbes also deliberated on the suitability of different battery categories and provided insights into their practical applications.


Designation: Senior Expert, Energy Efficiency, European Commission

Paolo Bertoldi directed attention toward developing sustainability regulations and certifications for data centres. Furthermore, he emphasized the importance of adhering to national and international sustainability demands. There was a  particular focus on compliance with Scope 4 requirements. Moreover, Paolo discussed strategies for monitoring and reporting. This was along with insights into the development and utilization of various standards such as LEED, ISO, and BSI.


Designation: Lead Data Centre Architect, AQ Compute

Jaime Comella Gómez-Aller provided an in-depth analysis of innovation in cooling solutions for data centres. He explored novel approaches. It includes direct liquid cooling, heat reuse, and thermal storage, along with other emerging technologies. Furthermore, the speaker discussed considerations for selecting the most suitable cooling systems. This is based on energy efficiency, sustainability criteria, and factors influencing data centre location decisions.

Aleksandra KLASSEN

Designation: Manager Renewable Energy & Carbon Advisory, Schneider Electric Sustainability Business – Gold Sponsor

Aleksandra Klassen outlined the decarbonization journey for cloud and service providers in the Net Zero Data Centre Summit. The speaker emphasized the transition towards sustainable energy practices. Moreover, she discussed strategies and challenges involved in reducing carbon emissions. This was particularly focused on the adoption of renewable energy sources and carbon-neutral technologies.


Designation: Sustainable IT & Eco Design Expert, Banque de France

Agnes Comte addressed the development and implementation of eco-design strategies. This is to reduce software and data storage footprints in data centres. Furthermore, she advocated for a holistic approach to mitigate environmental impacts, emphasizing the importance of effective software tools and operational processes. Moreover, the speaker discussed challenges related to minimizing data storage costs and carbon footprints. This is while maintaining corporate governance standards.

Christina MERTENS

Designation: Vice President, Business Development EMEA Virtus Data Centres

Christina Mertens explored the concept of ESG in data centres. The speaker highlighted the significance of location as a key factor. Furthermore, she discussed strategies for powering data centres with renewable energy sources, building near green power sources, and integrating data centres into the community. Moreover, Christina emphasized the role of data centres as future technology hubs. The speaker also shed light on the importance of investing in people, technology, and education.


Designation: Principal Urban Environmental Consultant, ANS Global – Bronze Sponsor

Steve McIntyre focused on integrating green infrastructure. This is to enhance building efficiencies and carbon attenuation. Furthermore, he discussed the benefits of incorporating natural elements into urban environments. This is to mitigate environmental impacts and promote sustainability.


Designation: Chief Datacentre Technology & Engineering Officer, Digital Realty

Chair, Energy Efficiency Working Group, Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact

Lex Coors discussed sustainable heat transfer and waste heat management in data centres. He elaborated on the business benefits of heat transfer and reuse. The speaker emphasized collaboration with grids and local communities. Furthermore, Lex also highlighted the importance of establishing heat-sharing agreements and effective contract management practices.


The panel discussion focused on the biggest challenges in meeting Net Zero targets and strategies to overcome these difficulties. Panelists included Aleksandra KLASSEN (Manager Renewable Energy & Carbon Advisory, Schneider Electric Sustainability Business), Torkild FOLLAUG (Chief Sustainability Officer, Green Mountain), and Lex COORS (Chief Datacentre Technology & Engineering Officer, Digital Realty; Chair, Energy Efficiency Working Group, Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact). They discussed various challenges. It includes energy consumption, sustainability regulations, and collaborative efforts to achieve Net Zero targets.


Designation: EMEA Head of Sustainability & Migrations/ Modernization, AWS

Tobias Kederer explored strategies for accelerating sustainability and decarbonization through the AWS Cloud. Furthermore, the speaker discussed the role of cloud computing in reducing environmental impacts at the Net Zero Data Centre Summit. The speaker also highlighted initiatives and technologies aimed at promoting sustainability within AWS services.


Designation: Director of Energy & Sustainability, Iron Mountain Data Centres

Chris Pennington discussed impactful energy procurement strategies for achieving a firm commitment to 24/7 carbon-free energy. Furthermore, the speaker shed light on objectives, challenges, and solutions related to energy procurement. He also emphasized the importance of continuous improvement in sustainability practices.

Riccardo CERATI

Designation: Business Development Manager Data centre, EMEA, VID FireKill – Bronze Sponsor

Riccardo Cerati presented an innovative approach to fire protection as part of the Net Zero strategy. He discussed sustainable fire safety design. This focused on energy and water savings, mechanical production efficiency, and CO2 emission reduction. Moreover, the speaker highlighted the importance of integrating sustainability principles into fire protection systems.

David HALL

Designation: SVP Colocation, AtlasEdge Data Centres

David Hall explored the journey to the Edge and why it represents the only sustainable data centre hosting strategy for the future. Furthermore, he discussed the transformative potential of Edge computing in reducing energy consumption. It also enhances local energy storage and contributes positively to communities. Additionally, David emphasized the importance of efficiency and innovation in Edge data centre design and operations at the Net Zero Data Centre Summit.


Designation: Executive Director, iMasons Climate Accord

Miranda Gardiner discussed the iMasons Climate Accord and how collaboration is driving sustainable change in the data centre industry. Furthermore, she highlighted the impact of shared knowledge and partnerships among research institutions, tech companies, and data centre operators. Moreover, the speaker emphasized the importance of energy-efficient technologies, reduced power consumption, and low-carbon materials in achieving sustainable standards.


Designation: CEO & Partner, B-Global Tech – Startup Sponsor

Carles Cortadas Guasch explored the challenges and opportunities in achieving sustainability. This is while designing buildings that are major consumers of energy. He discussed considerations such as energy and water consumption (PUE/WUE), cooling systems, and the impact of AI and high-performance computing. Cortadas Guasch also examined various sustainable design aspects. It includes renewable energies, free cooling, and building materials. This is while evaluating their social and economic sustainability implications.


Luca Raschewski (Project Manager, DNEFF) and Benjamin Ott (Research Associate, University of Stuttgart) focused on optimizing and integrating data centre waste heat with its surrounding and external environment. Furthermore, they discussed prospects and challenges for symbiotic integration of data centre waste heat into local facilities. So, they emphasized transparent communication and cooperation between stakeholders. The session also addressed the pros and cons of modular data centres for waste heat recovery.


Designation: Chairwoman, German Datacentre Association

Anna Klaft highlighted new and developing initiatives to boost sustainability in data centres. She draws lessons from the German market. Furthermore, she discussed innovative approaches and best practices adopted in Germany in the Net Zero Data Centre Summit. This is to enhance energy efficiency and reduce environmental impact in data centre operations.


Designation: Data Centre Solution Engineer, START Campus

Juliana Mizumoto shared insights on maintaining a balance between environmental consciousness and digital advancement in data centres. Furthermore, she discussed strategies for achieving equilibrium. So, there was an emphasis on the integration of sustainability into digital strategies and client-driven sustainability requirements. Moreover, the speaker presented a case study illustrating the use of civil construction tools for organizing and controlling sustainability initiatives in data centre projects.


Designation: Data centre Development Manager, CyrusOne

Amparo Garcia Puente addressed the challenges of exploiting renewable energy sources directly for data centres and discussed strategies for overcoming these difficulties. Furthermore, she explored various approaches to integrating renewable energy sources into data centre operations. She also highlighted the importance of technological innovation and collaborative partnerships in achieving sustainable energy solutions.


Designation: Director & Principal Consultant, Impleon

David Gyulnazaryan discussed how Open Source Data centres contribute to environmental and social sustainability. Moreover, he contrasted the legacy data centre business model focused on financial aspects with the holistic approach of Open Source Data centres. It prioritizes environmental and social pillars. Additionally, the speaker emphasized the role of Open Source solutions. This accelerates the transition to decarbonized and circular business models in the data centre industry.

Now, let’s move ahead and take a look at who the sponsors were and how they were valuable for the Net Zero Data Centre Summit. 

Net Zero Data Centre Summit: Who Were The Valuable Sponsors?

In the dynamic landscape of data centre sustainability, the Net Zero Data Centre Summit was enriched by the invaluable support of industry-leading sponsors and partners. These visionary organizations, ranging from Gold Sponsors to Startup Sponsors, brought forth innovative solutions and a steadfast commitment towards sustainable data centres. This is to drive sustainability and efficiency in the ever-evolving data centre ecosystem. So, let’s take a look at them:

Schneider Electric – Gold Sponsor

Schneider Electric stands as a global beacon in sustainable data centre infrastructure, embodying adaptability, resilience, and efficiency. With a presence in over 100 countries and decades of expertise in scalable data centre deployment, they are the digital partners for sustainability and efficiency. Furthermore, their vision of Data centres of the Future drives their extensive portfolio. It ranges from racks to UPS systems, electrical engineering solutions to cooling solutions, and comprehensive data centre building management. Additionally, their interconnected hardware, software, and services empower their customers to optimize operational efficiency, drive sustainable excellence, and enhance resilience. Through their solutions, they enable businesses to lower their environmental impact. So, it embraces a sustainable future while meeting the demands of an ever-evolving digital landscape.

VID FIREKILL – Bronze Sponsor

VID FIREKILL offers FM-approved low-pressure watermist systems. It provides effective and reliable fire protection for modern data centres. Moreover, their system is designed to safeguard all areas of data centres. It includes server halls utilizing Li-ion batteries, subfloors, technical rooms, and offices. Engineered to consume 85% less water than traditional sprinklers, their watermist system operates at lower pressures. As a result, it reduces power consumption. So, using only potable water as a suppression agent, their system ensures safety for both people and the environment. With VID FIREKILL, data centre operators can trust innovative fire protection solutions that prioritize efficiency, reliability, and sustainability.

Exide Technologies – Bronze Sponsor

Exide Technologies leads the way in providing innovative and sustainable battery storage solutions for data centres and UPS applications. With 135 years of experience, Exide is committed to driving a cleaner future through technology-agnostic energy solutions. Furthermore, their renowned brands such as Sprinter, Marathon, and Solition Data centre Li-Ion systems offer cutting-edge battery technologies. These are aimed at reducing carbon footprints. Moreover, from customized containerized storage solutions for renewable energy applications to lithium-ion-based energy storage systems, Exide empowers businesses to transition towards sustainable energy practices. So, it contributes to a greener and more resilient future through sustainable data centres.

ANS Global – Bronze Sponsor

ANS Global is a leader when it comes to innovative designs. They are known for bringing urban landscapes to life. The company also improves air quality and creates healthy spaces. As a result, it secures the present and future generations. They use natural soil for optimal plant health. The primary reason for this is a rich heritage in horticulture. Additionally, it is a symbol of sustainable urban development. So, as the world’s leading installer of living walls, they have completed various projects. It includes over 5000 projects in over 33 countries. It is a direct testament to their environmental stewardship and also global sustainability.

B-Global Tech – Startup Sponsor

B-global Tech has a specialty in providing engineering, architecture, and consulting services. They operate for data centres and IT infrastructures. Furthermore, they are focused on innovation and sustainability. As a result, they integrate cutting-edge technologies with sustainable construction strategies. It leads to incredible value for their clients. They have over 20 years of experience and a presence all around the world. So, they are trusted in critical infrastructure design and implementation. Moreover, their multidisciplinary team of engineers and architects is dedicated to designing sustainable and resilient data centre solutions. These centres meet the evolving needs of the industry.

Carrier – Exhibiting Partner

Carrier was founded by the inventor of modern air conditioning. It offers efficient, high-performing HVAC solutions designed for data centres. As a world leader in heating, air-conditioning, and refrigeration solutions, Carrier provides sustainable HVAC solutions. These integrate energy-efficient products and building controls. So, with a commitment to safety, sustainability, and intelligent building solutions, Carrier supports data centre operators in achieving optimal performance and efficiency. This is while minimizing environmental impact leading to sustainable data centres.

Airedale – Exhibiting Partner

Airedale believes in the critical role of air conditioning in an ever-changing world. Furthermore, it is dedicated to sustainability in the data centre market. Their leading-edge products, including chillers, CRAHs, fan walls, and two-phase immersion systems, are designed to maximize uptime and energy efficiency. Moreover, Airedale empowers data centre operators to achieve optimal performance and sustainability. It is backed by intelligent software solutions and end-to-end service support. As part of the Modine group, a global leader in thermal management technology, Airedale is committed to pushing the boundaries. They constantly move towards innovation and sustainability in data centre cooling solutions.

To Sum Up

The Net Zero Data Centre Summit highlighted the industry’s growing focus and momentum around sustainability. While progress has been made, the path to net zero still faces challenges. These will require continued innovation, investment, and collaboration across the sector.

Events like this provide a valuable opportunity for key stakeholders. They are enabled to come together and accelerate the transition. As data centre demand continues to grow globally, it will be critical that new and existing facilities are designed and operated with energy efficiency and renewables in mind. To be ahead on your journey towards net zero, make sure you check out all the upcoming events!

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