Rack Centre racks up IFS EDGE certification
Actis majority-owned datacentre Rack Centre, an established carrier-neutral Tier III datacentre in West Africa, said it has become the first International Finance Corporation (IFC) EDGE-certified datacentre in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA).
EDGE, an innovation of IFC, member of the World Bank group, is a preeminent international green certification system that focuses on empowering developers of residential and commercial buildings to deliver resource efficient buildings. The focus is on efficiency and affordability to enable developers and builders to quickly identify the most effective strategies to achieve energy saving, water saving and embodied energy materials.
The certification recognises the significant savings the centre will achieve in energy and water use, incorporated as part of the design to expand the facility’s IT load from 1.5MW to 13MW.
On completion of this expansion, Rack Centre is forecast to achieve 35% more energy savings, which is estimated to avoid carbon emissions totalling 100 tonnes each year.
Founded in 2012, Rack Centre focuses solely on providing datacentre colocation services “and the best interconnection between carriers and customers.”
Actis first partnered with Rack Centre in early 2020 as part of its US$250-million African datacentre platform investment.
To ensure the datacentre could meet the rapid growth in demand for hosting capacity in Africa, whilst at the same time reducing its environmental impact and operating costs, Actis has spearheaded a programme of green design philosophies and initiatives that will result in the datacentre achieving 35% energy saving, 41% water savings and deliver a 45% saving in embodied energy in materials used.
By prioritising the development of Rack Centre’s sustainability practises, the African datacentre platform engaged with the IFC EDGE team on establishing an assessment tool specifically for datacentres.
According to Rack Centre, it will achieve these savings through a range of measures and green design principles, including switching from diesel to gas power generation, implementing water efficient cooling systems, implementing a low energy air circulation system, and sourcing local materials and services wherever possible.
Switching its power source from diesel to gas power will not only save more than $10 million a year in operating costs, but it will also reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality.
Ezekiel Egboye, Rack Centre Chief Operations Officer said, “Sustainability is at the core of what we do, a quest that permeates through all our actions. We are delighted to be the first to be certified in Europe, Middle East and Africa, which is really a continuation of Rack Centre's firsts in Africa as it was also the first datacentre to be Tier III Constructed Facility certified and has grown the most comprehensive interconnection and limitless peering ecosystem of over 45 carriers and ISPs, also bringing about interconnect efficiencies. It is an honour to receive this certification and another step in delivering sustainable digital infrastructure in the region."
Jasper Lankhorst, CEO of Actis-Convergence Partners, pan-African Data Centre platform, added: “Sustainability is key to meeting the growing demand for digital infrastructure on the African continent. At Rack Centre, being the first datacentre to secure the IFC Edge certification in Europe, Middle East and Africa, make us very proud. Our goal is to implement similar improvements across future investments made by our pan-African datacentre platform to help the continent secure a low carbon data revolution.”
Vivek Pathak, Director for Climate Business Department at the IFC, pointed out: “It had been a hugely rewarding process to work in partnership with Rack Centre to develop this EDGE assessment tool for datacentres. We hope other datacentre operators will follow in Rack Centre’s footsteps and take the necessary action on the digital economies environmental impact by becoming IFC EDGE certified.”