To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department has made an assessment of the carbon cost of storing data online.
As outlined in the National Data Strategy, better data use and data-driven innovation will be vital to solving some of today’s biggest challenges, including the UK’s transition to Net Zero through driving emissions reductions across sectors. At the same time as seizing this opportunity we know that we must remain vigilant to the environmental consequences of increased data use.
Data centres are acknowledged as one of many contributing factors to ICT emissions, along with TV, Networks, and User Devices, although experts disagree over the sector’s precise contribution. To this end, as part of the National Data Strategy Forum, I recently hosted a roundtable with data centre providers to understand the steps they are taking to reduce their carbon emissions including through the commitments outlined in the Climate Neutral Data Centre Pledge.