Green Mountain Offering Service Providers Greenest, Possibly Cheapest Hosting Deal

Channel News

MSPs using the Norwegian facility can offer clients no carbon footprint and no bill shock

A new data centre has claimed to offer G-Cloud suppliers and other service providers the ultimate carbon reduction for their socially-conscious business and government clients.

The Green Mountain data centre in Stavanger, Norway, is powered and cooled by water and built into an old, recycled Nato hideaway. The owner Smedvig claims the 22, 000 square metre data centre has the world’s lowest Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) rating and a practically non-existent carbon footprint.

Fjord estate

The building, housed inside a mountain on an island in a fjord, was used during the cold war by Nato but is now missile and mine free. Smedvig claims it is also the world’s most secure institution, with 60 metres of rock creating a barrier to intruders, electromagnetic storms, tidal waves – and even missile attack.

The data centre uses sea water to cool its halls and power from local hydro-electric dams, which creates a PUE of 1.1. The biggest selling point is not the security or green credentials but the cheapness of the electricity supply, said Green Mountain’s CEO Knut Molaug.

Wholesale electricity costs 12 cents per kilowatt hour in the UK, according to Eurostat, but less than half that (five cents/KWh) in Norway. Green Mountain has three different power sources from three separate hydro-dams, so clients can achieve high fault tolerance without needing to invest in backup generators, claimed Green Mountain.

The Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem) estimates UK power tariffs could double in 10 years. Some consumer groups put the estimate higher, with Energy Helpline predicting a rise of 150 percent in the next eight years.

“We can offer clients consistent costs for the next 10 years,” said Molaug. “These days most data centre purchases are signed off by chief financial officers and that proposition could be very attractive.”

One co-location analyst visiting the site confirmed the data centre’s security credentials. Speaking to ChannelBiz, he said, “It’s like something out of a James Bond film. It’s a building inside a rock on an island surrounded by security cameras. It’s got everything except a swimming pool full of crocodiles to drop your enemies in.”

Author: Nick Booth
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