HDR: data centre & sustainability trends 2021
Peter Gaston, Director, Australia & Jordan Kirrane, sustainability lead at HDR on 2021 trends for data centres and sustainability
Speed of construction will be the driver of new data centre design: Surging appetite for cloud storage is forcing developers to adapt delivery methods
Building faster, bigger, cheaper and more reliable data centres is now the goal of developers feeding the demand for cloud storage that has exploded over the past year amid the shift to online living and working. This is no truer than in the Asia Pacific region, which is playing catch up on North America and Europe in connectivity infrastructure, fuelled by growing wealth, expanding populations, and appetite for technology. With speed the goal, there are two ways developers will respond: either standardising data centre designs so pre-fabricated components can be assembled on appropriate sites, or creating a chain of construction partners to allow site-specific designs to be rapidly developed and implemented even once construction has commenced.
Why businesses pursued sustainability in 2020: Not only did the focus on resources, health and wellbeing remain relevant during the coronavirus, it took on greater momentum
The sustainability agenda has supercharged during 2020 as COVID-19 forces us to consider our vulnerability to global crises. Property companies, which combine to emit 40 percent of the world’s carbon dioxide, are among those racing to go green as they better understand how buildings affect peoples’ health and wellbeing, and the competitive advantages to gain by responding quickly. We’re seeing developers move to embed zero carbon, water and waste goals into their developments from the start, as well as upgrade their existing buildings towards these goals. Investors are also ploughing record sums into Environmental social and governance (ESG) funds. Plus, brokers are blacklisting non-compliant companies, making ambitious sustainability goals critical for accessing finance.