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22 Aug 2022, 11:45
Hannah Naylor

Waste heat from data centres can greatly aid in gas saving efforts - industry group

Clean Energy Wire

Waste heat from data centres can be an important contributor to save gas during Germany’s struggle to prevent shortages if it is utilised to heat buildings, said industry efficiency group DENEFF. If waste heat from all German data centres was combined and utilised, a city the size of Berlin could be heated, according to the lobby group. Instead, most of it is currently lost into the atmosphere. Using the energy would benefit not only data centres, but also residents and efforts to increase energy security, the group said, adding it was in the process of developing innovative solutions for more waste heat utilisation from data centres together with research institutes.

Federal minister Robert Habeck has already announced heating and cooling limits on public buildings to save gas, but the industry initiative argues this alone will not secure energy security: “Lowering the temperature in public buildings helps in the short term, but is not enough, and freezing in such buildings in the long term cannot be the solution. Instead, we now have to solve the problem technically, and waste heat from data centres is an important component here”, executive director of DENEFF Christian Noll says.

The German government has made various calls for gas consumers, including industry and households, to reduce gas consumption as the country heads towards a winter with possible gas shortages. Economy minister Robert Habeck called gas supply cuts the “main risk” for the German economy.

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