New European research programme focuses on circular data centre

April 17, 2019

By Robbert Hoeffnagel, Green IT Amsterdam

Currently, only 10 percent of the so-called 'critical raw materials' used in data centres are recovered. If we want to further reduce the impact of data centres on the environment and our living environment, the percentage of devices and materials that are re-used or recycled will have to be drastically increased. That is why a group of companies, universities and other parties - including Green IT Amsterdam - are starting a research programme under the name "CEDaCI". Organisations from the four main data centre countries in Europe - the Netherlands, Germany, France and the United Kingdom - are participating in the project.

"North-West Europe - and in particular the UK, Germany, France and the Netherlands - is the EU's data centre hotspot," says Julie Chenadec, Project Manager at Green IT Amsterdam. "Servers and other hardware in data centres often have a replacement period of 1 to 5 years. This contributes substantially to the production of 11.8 megaton WEEE per year. This makes WEEE one of the fastest growing waste streams in the European Union”.

Currently, only 10% of critical raw materials are recycled and recovered. CEDaCI wants to increase this to 40% for the baseline (107 tonnes) at the end of the project in 2021. And further to 400% or 242 tons of WEEE after 10 years. Read more