In-Depth: Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA) introduced this legislation to direct the Executive branch to harness information and communications technologies to improve energy efficiency and reduce energy use within the federal government:
“As the nation’s largest energy user, landowner, and employer, the federal government should lead by example to improve the energy efficiency of its technology equipment and data centers. This legislation will reduce the federal government’s energy use, save taxpayer dollars, and set the standard for the private sector. I’m pleased to see this important policy once again pass the House, and I look forward to its swift consideration in the Senate.”
This legislation has five bipartisan cosponsors, including three Republicans and two Democrats, in the current Congress and hasn’t received a committee vote. In the 115th Congress, it passed the House by voice vote with one Republican cosponsor, Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL).
Of Note: Bill Kleyman, a contributor to TechTarget, points out, “You can't effectively manage what you can't monitor. The only way to run a properly optimized data center is to have a solid monitoring platform designed for your environment." An effective monitoring platform can help identify zombie services, inefficient equipment, and total energy consumption.
Data centers account for almost 2% of all U.S. electricity consumption and 10% of the federal government’s electricity usage. In 2017, the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions estimated that widespread adoption of energy-efficient information technologies, including energy solutions at the more than 2,000 federal data centers, could save the federal government more than $5 billion in energy costs through 2020.
The DOE’s Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) plays a critical role in reducing energy use and increasing federal agencies’ renewable energy. Since 1975, the federal government has decreased the energy intensity of its buildings by more than 40%. FEMP’s goals include helping agencies reduce GHG emissions by 40% by fiscal year 2025 compared to fiscal year 2008 and ensure that at least 30% of federal electricity consumption is generated from renewable sources by 2025.
FEMP provides agencies and organizations the information, tools, and assistance they need to achieve their energy-related requirements and goals. This includes helping federal agencies with project financing mechanisms, including energy-saving performance contracts (ESPCs). In an ESPC, a contractor pays the up-front cost of improvements and is repaid through a portion of the energy savings.
Summary by Lorelei Yang
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