The rare uber-green LEED Platinum certification for data centers is becoming a bit more common. On Monday, Vantage Data Centers announced that one of its data centers in Santa Clara, Calif., has been awarded the LEED Platinum certification, meaning the facility met the high energy efficiency and sustainability requirements of the U.S. Green Building Council, which manages the LEED program.
The announcement comes on the heels of GE last week showing off its own LEED Platinum data center in Louisville, Ky. Data center energy consumption is becoming an important issue for data center operators and Internet companies. In 2010, data centers consumed about 1.3 percent of all electricity use for the world and 2 percent of all electricity use for the U.S., according to the latest report from Jonathan Koomey.
Vantage says it received the green certification for energy-efficient and water-efficient designs, including energy-efficient and low-toxic building materials, energy-efficient lighting, a lighting control system, an efficient HVAC system, recycled materials for the building, and recycling of the construction waste from the building. The facility is one of three data centers on that campus, and the other two data centers are registered for the LEED Platinum certification and the company expects they will be certified as well.
Vantage also reported the power efficiency metric (PUE), which is a commonly used figure in the data center industry and which looks at how efficiently the building is using energy (PUE compares energy use of the entire building to the energy use of just the IT for the building). Vantage says its LEED Platinum data center has a PUE of 1.29, measured during commissioning, which is pretty low (1 is very efficient, while 2 is not so efficient).