UK’s leading carbon neutral data center provider


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“For UKFast, being sustainable is a priority, not because of optics or commercial pressure, but because it is the right thing to do. Of course, our customers want us to be carbon neutral. But if they didn’t, we would still be zero carbon. There is a perception that data center vendors are not environmentally friendly, but this can and should be a misconception. This is why it is so important for us to do everything possible to reduce the effects of our carbon footprint. – Dr Chris Folkerd, Director of Enterprise Technology at UKFast

UKFast is known to provide managed IT services to over 5,000 organizations across the UK. These include the country’s Cabinet Office, the Ministry of Defense and the National Health Service, as well as private sector companies in all sectors.

We recently spoke with Dr Chris Folkerd, Director of Enterprise Technology, to learn more about UKFast’s track record in sustainability, why he thinks it’s important for solution and service providers. cloud to minimize their carbon footprint, and what it means to be part of the VMware Zero Carbon Committed initiative.

“Sustainability has always been a big part of what we do,” says Folkerd. “As the UK’s leading carbon neutral data center provider, we are setting an example of what climate-friendly hosting services look like, and we want to continue to be the absolute best example of sustainability by action. A significant percentage of our platforms run on VMware-based technologies, and zero carbon has been a goal we have had in common for many years. It was only natural for us to accept such a significant effort as VMware Zero Carbon Committed. “

UKFast offers an extensive portfolio of cloud solutions and services. These include managed services for deployments with larger hyperscalers, hosting and collation services for corporate data center facilities, cybersecurity (including penetration testing, security audits, threat monitoring and security products) and eCloud, UKFast’s private cloud based on VMware stack.

“Our customers rely on us for our technological acumen and our radical focus on reliability and customer service,” adds Folkerd. “We guarantee 100% network uptime and operate on what we call a pod system which ensures that our customers are always working with the same engineers, so that regardless of our size we continue to provide individualized attention. and bring in-depth knowledge of tailor-made solutions for each client. to our work. We also make sure that if a customer needs help, their call will be answered by someone who can help them in six rings or less. Our approach to sustainability reflects that same commitment to doing what’s right, even if doing what’s right requires a different approach or being the first to do it.

As well as being the first supplier in the UK to operate its data centers in a carbon neutral manner – all energy is supplied by green suppliers – the company follows a strict carbon offset plan to deal with any use of fossil fuels, such as for employee commuting. For this reason, and the fact that the company has adopted a work-from-home policy, UKFast is no longer just a carbon neutral data center operator, but also a carbon negative company.

The benefits of the cloud

“Cloud technology has vast potential to help businesses become carbon neutral because of the economies of scale it allows,” said Folkerd. “Data centers that the cloud runs on are typically much more efficient and denser than the on-premises installations that most organizations can create. Equally important, you don’t have many servers running 24/7 even if they are not in use. There is also, and rightly so, much greater commercial pressure on suppliers to invest in green equipment and practices. “

Folkerd notes that it’s common for new customers to ask about UKFast’s sustainability credentials, as carbon neutrality becomes fundamental to most companies’ strategies. It’s a conversation that UKFast welcomes and encourages.

“For UKFast, being sustainable is a priority, not because of optics or commercial pressure, but because it is the right thing to do. Of course, our customers want us to be carbon neutral. But if they didn’t, we would still be zero carbon. There is a perception that data center vendors are not environmentally friendly, but this can and should be a misconception. This is why it is so important for us to do everything possible to reduce the effects of our carbon footprint. It is possible to be carbon neutral now, it doesn’t matter by 2050. “

Learn more about UKFast and its partnership with VMware here.

Copyright © 2021 IDG Communications, Inc.


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