Cloud adoption helps UK councils hit green targets

UK councils are increasingly moving services into the cloud in order to comply with green and environmental targets being imposed by the government.

Related: G-Cloud suppliers pen letter of advice to government

Public sector technology provider Civica told CloudPro that adoption is on the increase among local councils across the UK as off-premise IT allows them to reach green and environmental targets.

“We are getting organisations now that are getting rid of their current datacentres...and moving them to the Civica cloud just because it’s getting it off their premises and they are using that as part of their Carbon Reduction Commitment,” said Paul Bradbury, group business development director at Civica.

In addition to the fact it helps councils meet targets, moving to the cloud is also much more efficient than having a data centre on site and cuts costs on other things that are needed such as air conditioning and power.

“If you just have a server room stuck up in an office somewhere, it’s never going to be efficient,” said John Hood, CTO at Civica.

This conflicts slightly with the view of Andy Lawrence, VP of research for data centre technology and eco-efficient IT at 451 Research, who told the same publication that being greener is not the only reason to move to the cloud and this argument often doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.

“Cloud certainly should be greener: it involves a lot of resource sharing, economies of scale and automation, which should translate into reduced energy use and therefore reduced carbon emissions,” Lawrence said. “However, it would not be sensible to move a substantial IT workload from one place to another without clear evidence and few cloud providers will ever provide that.”

Related: 64% of UK council websites are too slow

Local authorities and councils have been slow to procure cloud services offered by the government’s G-Cloud program and a survey last year reported that 87 per cent of councils and local authorities weren’t using it and 76 per cent had no knowledge as to what it can be used for.

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