WASHINGTON U.S. data centers consumed the equivalent of the power generated by five 1,000-kilowatt power plants in 2005, according to an energy consumption study commissioned by Advanced Micro Devices Inc.
"This study demonstrates that unchecked demand for data center energy use can constrain growth and present real business challenges," Randy Allen, corporate vice president of AMD's Server and Workstation Division, told a conference in New York on Thursday (Feb. 15).
AMD's study, authored by Jonathan Koomey of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories (Berkeley, Calif.), estimates that U.S. data centers and associated infrastructure consumed 5 million kilowatts of energy in 2005. Total U.S. data center electricity consumption, including servers, cooling and auxiliary equipment, totaled 45 billion kWh. The total utility bill for the U.S. in 2005 was $2.7 billion, the study estimated.
Global data-center power consumption cost $7.2 billion in 2005, according to the study.
AMD said the study built on data from market analyst IDC as well as measured data and published estimates of power usage for various servers.
While attempting to highlight growing energy consumption by data centers, AMD is also using the study to promote its dual-core Opteron processors.
AMD's Allen called on the computer industry to broaden cooperation with the U.S. Energy Department and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to reduce power consumption at U.S. data centers.
AMD said it would share the results of Koomey's research at a stakeholder workshop organized by the EPA and Lawrence Berkeley Labs on Friday (Feb. 16) at the Santa Clara Convention Center. EPA officials will also review preliminary conclusions of a report to Congress on data center energy consumption.
EPA's final report to Congress is due in June 2007.