I must go, for I am their leader and they just left!

iMasons “Leading the Charge” on Climate Change

On Sept. 25 the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released a special report on The Ocean and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC) with (yet) another dire warning from the world’s scientists that there is no time left to act on climate change to prevent the worst of the impacts, and as I write this article COP 25 just wrapped up in Madrid, mostly failing to rally the world to take the next crucial steps.  Ladies and gentlemen, we are up against it!


iMasons Global Member Summit held last month at DCD London used the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to align our industry’s actions and plans to a common global framework – a framework that is also well understood and used by the hyperscalers and other leaders in our space.  The energy in the room was amazing!


After a brief orientation to the SDGs by Patrik Ohlund, Chair of iMasons Sustainability Committee, the iMasons membership got to work mapping opportunities to the SDGs.  Here are a few of the top opportunities they identified:

Energy – SDG 7, Affordable and Clean Energy, and 13 – Climate Action

  • Commit to 100% renewables throughout the industry
  • Publish a guide on the most efficient cooling technology by location
  • Develop resources to provide full transparency of energy lifecycle
  • Share and publish best practices
  • Rethink software design to minimize energy use – create “lite” versions of common apps
  • Make sustainability  key component in technical design and operations
  • Help users of infrastructure to understand the climate impact of their activities

Resources – SDGs 6, Clean Water and Sanitation, and 12, Responsible Consumption and Production

  • Develop guidelines for data centers to be net positive
  • Make WUE and CUE mainstream
  • Leverage the supply chain to increase sustainability
  • Establish a code-of-conduct around sustainability
  • Rethink software design to minimize waste
  • Make sustainability a key component in technical design and operations

These were some of the ways they identified that iMasons can support our members to make a difference:

  • Share best practices and promote collaboration
  • Develop common guidelines, standards and metrics for sustainable design and operations
  • Push sustainability in education and training
  • Increase public awareness

It was truly inspirational to see the fire in the bellies of several of the Master iMasons to take significant action on climate change!  While our industry appears to be a target-rich environment, it is clear the opportunities are also complex to understand, design, and implement.  Many of them step on someone’s business model.  And yet, we must act, not only to save our children’s planet but also to prevent our industry from becoming the next oil industry, or cigarette industry.

Under the leadership of iMason’s Sustainability Committee, we are developing a sustainability roadmap or action plan for our industry.  The next opportunity for the general iMasons membership to contribute to this process will be at the next Global Member Summit to be held April 21 in the Bay Area.  Time is running out – we need to act now, and you can help.  Join us at the Global Member Summit!

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