Speech by Dr. John Keung BCA CEO at the opening of the Green Data Centre Forum 2013 at Mapletree Business City

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Mr Quek See Tiat, 
Chairman, Building and Construction Authority

Mr Leong Keng Thai,
Deputy Chief Executive
Infocomm Development Authority

Distinguished Guests

Ladies and Gentlemen

Good morning. Thank you for joining us here today.

Growth potential for data centres globally
The global data centre market is set to expand rapidly in the next few years, given the growth of cloud computing, digital media and IT services. In fact, over 80% of the major data centres in the Asia Pacific are running at close to 90% capacity and space is at a premium.

Growth potential for the domestic market
In this context, Singapore continues to be a prime hub for regional facilities and very strong growth is expected in the next few years, driven by government-led investments into next-generation broadband networks and IT infrastructure build-outs.

The growth also means much higher energy costs, which make up as much as 50% of the operating costs. It is estimated that the 10 largest data centres in Singapore consume energy equivalent to 130,000 households. Consequently, there are significant opportunities for cost savings and improving sustainability by adopting Green Data Centre technologies. By going green, a data centre will be able to achieve potential energy savings of up to 30%. Aside from cost savings, green data centres may also open up market opportunities through increased recognition from clients who place high value on environment-friendly initiatives.

It was with these considerations in mind that BCA and IDA launched the Green Mark Scheme for Data Centres in October last year. First of its kind in Asia, the scheme is an extension of the successful BCA Green Mark for buildings scheme launched in 2005, and serves to encourage data centres to be energy efficient. At this point, I would like to take this opportunity to thank our partners - the Infocomm Development Authority (IDA), Energy Research Institute@Nanyang Technological University and our US counterpart, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratories for collaborating with us to develop the Green Mark for Data Centres scheme.

Announcement of winners
The pilot study of the Green Mark for Data Centres saw four firms being certified and we will be formally recognising their efforts today. Congratulations to all the winners, and thank you for being the pioneer batch of data centres to step forward and do your part for our environment. I am also glad to note from some of our winners that in some cases, it resulted in a freeing up of capacity to support more IT systems, leading to a more cost-effective IT infrastructure.

Take for instance our GoldPLUS winner, Equinix SG 2 Data Centre, which, by going green, has seen a 10% reduction in electricity which translates to a saving of 4.3 million kilowatt hours annually. The firm will share more with you on how it plans to achieve such phenomenal savings later on during the forum.

Launch of Green Mark for new data centres
When the scheme was first launched in October 2012, it was only open to existing data centre operators. I am pleased to announce today that the Green Mark for New Data centres is now officially ready as well. New data centres that are either newly built or yet to be built have more flexibility to get it right from Day 1 to adopt the latest energy efficient technology and industry best practices. With the extension to new data centres, the Green Mark for Data Centres is now a fully-fledged scheme. This scheme joins our suite of occupant-centric Green Mark schemes that provide opportunities to engage and educate occupants on the reasons and benefits of going green and also how they can play their part.

The business case for Green data centres
Certainly, in every business decision, cost is a key consideration. As a business owner, you will have to take into account the capital costs of going green against the potential savings. However, do bear in mind that optimising energy usage will result in major savings, given that energy costs are on the rise. Additionally, if everything is managed efficiently, less hardware will be needed and correspondingly, fewer software licences and human resources will be required. Overall, going green makes strong business sense.

To better illustrate the business case for green data centres, we have arranged for some of the winners to share their experiences of going green with you later on during the forum. Through their stories, you will realise that green initiatives can maximise financial gains for your firm through immediate savings by lower energy usage. Indeed, there is a solid rationale for firms to embark on the green data centre journey, for it adds distinct value to a firm's bottom line through maximising efficiency. If your firm has yet to start on its green journey, I urge you to give the Green Mark for Data Centres a serious thought. Thank you.


News release - Joint BCA and and Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) release: Data Centres Have More Reasons To Go Green

Portable document format version of the speech is also available (29KB .pdf).

Popular e-Services


The Construction Workforce Registration System (CWRS) is an online portal for CoreTrade and Multi-skilling registration and the renewal of Direct R1 eligibility.

Online Registration for Verification System

ORV allows you to register the workers for Identity Verification and check your registration status online.

Lifts and Escalators Application (LEAP) Portal

Lift and escalator owners, contractors and Specialist Professional Engineers (SPEs) can apply for and view applications for Permit to Operate (PTO) here.