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Stockholm’s Sustainable Data Centres to Heat Homes

Stockholm-Data-Parks

The City of Stockholm is positioning itself as a global hub for sustainable data centres by recovering the excess heat to warm homes, reports Fast Company.

As part of longer-term strategy to meet energy and climate goals, Stockholm is looking to supply 10 percent of the city’s residential heating demand through excess heat recovered from data centres.

According to Stockholm Data Parks, the initiative launched last month in partnership with infrastructure firms Stokab, Fortum Värme and Ellevio, one ten-megawatt data centre can provide enough heat for 20,000 apartments – saving almost 8,000 tonnes of CO2.

The city is attracting companies to run their data centres from Stockholm by offering the opportunity to get paid for the waste heat from servers or receive free cooling from utility companies in exchange for excess heat. Businesses that have already signed up include Interxion, IBM, Ericsson and Bahnhof.

District heating operator Fortum Värme will provide the heat pumps that concentrate the thermal energy – usually the most expensive component of a waste heat recapture system. The partnership model helps get around some of the barriers to re-using waste heat, including the need to raise significant upfront investment for such technologies.

The scheme will be expanded to another three locations – Brista, Skarpnäck and Väsby – over the next three years.

The Stockholm Data Park website has a nicely presented overview on how the ‘internet to heating homes’ idea works, which can be viewed here.

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