Five ways cloud helps businesses to achieve sustainability
The evidence of climate change is now more pronounced than ever. Different parts of the world are experiencing adverse weather conditions, some leading to destruction, great suffering and even deaths. Talk of abnormal flooding in parts of Pakistan and Japan, the increased wildfires in California and Australia, and the ravaging droughts in East Africa, among other devastating weather conditions. What these events have in common is that they are essentially effects of climate change.
As part and parcel of the global community, business organisations have a responsibility to assist in alleviating the situation. Logic dictates that a corporate person, like the natural person, be held accountable for ensuring the earth is safe. Business communities have a role in reducing environmental degradation and the ultimate effects of climate change. They need to play their part in fostering sustainability. While there are different ways to achieve this, cloud computing is essential in helping business organisations achieve sustainability. In this article, we explore ways the cloud allows businesses to achieve sustainability.
With the increased demand for digital resources, energy consumption has been one of the main concerns. Powering of computing resources and data centre cooling are some of the largest energy consumers, with businesses recording increased bills as they continue to roll out digital transformation. In an attempt to reduce their power bills, business organisations are embracing technologies such as liquid immersion cooling that consume relatively less power but offer quality services. Cloud computing is one of the technologies that have to a large extent helped business organisations achieve this. One of the most significant ways in which cloud computing has helped businesses is by reducing energy consumption. Cloud providers have been able to achieve energy efficiency by optimising their data centres and using renewable energy sources such as wind and solar power. For the users of cloud computing services, using shared resources instead of maintaining their own data centres has allowed them to reduce their energy consumption and therefore carbon footprint.
With cloud computing, businesses can scale their IT resources up or down as per their needs; this allows them to optimise their resource usage and minimise waste. By avoiding the need for excess capacity and unnecessary hardware, businesses can reduce their costs and improve their sustainability performance.
Cloud technology, to a large extent, reduces or entirely eliminates the need for travel and commuting by enabling virtual collaboration and remote work. This not only saves time but also reduces the operation cost. Apart from these savings, technology has a bigger impact, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and ultimately helping the business reduce its environmental impact.
With cloud computing resources, businesses can manage their data more efficiently. This reduces the need for physical storage devices and paper-based record-keeping. With these benefits, a business will reduce the space needed for storage, ultimately helping reduce the environmental impact and improve its sustainability performance.
Sustainability reporting, including ESG, has become the focus for environmentally conscious firms. Businesses can take advantage of cloud computing resources to improve their sustainability reporting by providing real-time access to data and metrics that can help measure and track their sustainability performance. This, to a large extent, can help businesses identify areas for improvement and demonstrate their commitment to sustainability.
Cloud computing is not just about assisting the business in managing data; it can also help businesses achieve sustainability through promoting energy efficiency, resource optimisation, virtual collaboration, efficient data management, and sustainability reporting. In this line, businesses that adopt cloud technology can reduce their environmental impact and create long-term value for all stakeholders.