Green Technology & Energy-Efficiency

I am passionate about environmental issues, particularly in relation to reducing the IT sector's contribution to the greenhouse effect. Data centres in the UK use around 1.9% of our total grid power, and the average utilisation of servers is as low as 10%. I am working to drive forwards the green agenda in the technology industry on a number of fronts:

Memset® 's leadership by example

Memset® was the UK's first CarbonNeutral ISP and we have continued to lead the industry with our green hosting initiatives. We were one of the earliest providers of virtual dedicated server technology, which allows for huge efficiency gains since many applications need their own dedicated environment but not not need the full resources of a powerful modern machine.

We have won several awards for our commitment to energy efficiency in the data centre, including being named as the UK CEED Sustain IT Environmental Innovator 2009.

Intellect, the BCS DCSG & the EU Code of Conduct

I am a member of Intellect UK's directorial leadership group on energy & the environment, and also a committee member of the the (BCS's) Data Centre Specialist Group (DCSG). I am working bridge their and Intellect's expertise in the area, with the aim of giving the industry a united voice.

I am currently working closely with the DCSG on areas such as data centre metrics and measurement as well as sharing with them our experiences of virtualisation technologies and energy-efficient data centre infrastructures. We are also working closely with the European Commission on the Code of Conduct for Data Centres, to which Memset® wil be an early signatory.

As well as being involved in the above groups, I also speak fairly frequently on the subject.

Dispelling the myths

There are a large number of myths about green issues in IT and elsewhere. For example, the whole standby power of consumer electronics issue is a red herring. Additionally, the IT industry has recently been somewhat vilified by the media, with comparisons of our 2% contribution to the greenhouse effect being cited as the same as the airline industry. The reality, however, is that the IT industry contributes something like 10% of our national GDP and is also a huge enabler of green initiatives ranging from improved logistics to home working. ICT is part of the solutions to climate change, not part of the problem.

Getting perspective

I also have some strong views on the fundamentally flawed nature of our drives and motives. The UK cannot possible hope to significantly change global climate change ourselves, however we can act as exemplars to other countries - ideally showing them that it is possible have a minimal environmental impact without reducing our quality of life. Investment in science & technology is what will ultimately make that possible. We must reduce our carbon output in the short-term, but in the long term the only solution is fusion.

Awards & Nominations

UKtech50: No. 20 Social Media Champion Institute of Directors Young Director of the Year SE NatWest Every Woman Award Blackberry Women & Technology Awards 2008 PC Pro Best Web Host Award 6 years running Surrey Business Awards 2006/07 Computing Awards for Excellence 2007 Chamber Awards 2009 National Finalist Toast of Surrey 2011: Business Personality of the Year Carbon Neutral