EU Data Centre Code roundly ignored

A new study into the EU Code of Conduct for Data Centres on Energy Efficiency shows that it is being roundly ignored by the majority of UK data centre managers - described by the study's commissioner as "pathetically poor levels of adoption."

The Code, which was created to offer a standardised and allegedly-accurate way for data centres to measure their energy efficiency ratings and offer customers a metric for choosing the 'greenest' of the bunch, hasn't set the UK alight: a 2009 study showed that just 12 per cent of "large UK organisations" had adopted the Code, a figure which has barely risen to a risible 15 per cent this year.

The figures come from data centre specialist Sentrum, which commissioned the study, and also reveal some interesting excuses for non-compliance from managers in charge of large UK data centres.

The biggest excuse was that businesses simply don't have the resources to implement the Code at the moment, with around 48 per cent of IT managers blaming a lack of resources. A further 36 per cent stated, bluntly, that, "there have always been other, more important, IT priorities to manage."

Franek Sodzawiczny, Sentrum's development director, lays the blame for the poor adoption rates directly at the feet of the EU: "Our research showed that the failure of the Code to gain traction within the industry is largely due to the way in which it has been set up, introduced and administered," he claims. "By being presented as a voluntary choice, the Code has simply become a toothless guard dog – essentially lacking the tools to police, and enforce, the associated necessary standards.”

It's hard to disagree. The voluntary nature of the Code has left many viewing it as a optional luxury, with 27 per cent directly citing the lack of financial penalties for non-adoption as a prime reason for ignoring the Code.

Sadly, the story isn't much better for those who bothered to adopt the Code. Of those that signed up, a whopping 87 per cent admit that they have failed to comply by its recommendations, leaving those who have wondering why they bothered in the first place.

Sodzawiczny states of the survey: "The net result of this is a failure of the Code to deliver upon its basic remit," a stark reminder of the uphill struggle that voluntary codes such as this face.