Cloudflare Helps Companies Reduce their IT Infrastructure’s Carbon Footprint By Up To 96% by Moving To The Cloud

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A new report finds that switching enterprise network services from on-premises devices to Cloudflare services can cut related carbon emissions by up to 96%.

India, September 26, 2023: Cloudflare, Inc. (NYSE: NET), the security, performance, and reliability company helping to build a better Internet, today shared a new independent report published by Analysys Mason that shows switching enterprise network services from on-premise devices to Cloudflare’s cloud-based services can cut related carbon emissions up to 78% for very large businesses and up to 96% for small businesses. The report is one of the first of its kind to calculate the potential emissions savings achieved by replacing enterprise network and security hardware boxes with more efficient cloud services.

Global Internet usage accounts for 3.7% of global CO2 emissions, about equal to the CO2 emissions of all air traffic around the world. The Internet needs to reduce its overall energy consumption, especially as regulators continue to implement the Paris Climate Accord, including plans to transition to a zero-emissions economy. The European Climate Law requires that Europe’s economy and society become climate-neutral by 2050, with a target of reducing net GHG emissions by at least 55% by 2030, compared to 1990 levels. Regulators in the United States and the European Union, among others, have also announced plans to require companies to disclose climate-related information, including carbon emissions resulting from their operations and supply chains, as well as climate-related risks and opportunities. Finally, among the Fortune Global 500, 63% of companies have now set 2050 targets for emissions reductions. Companies large and small will increasingly be looking to reduce carbon throughout their supply chains, particularly their IT infrastructure.

“The best way to reduce your IT infrastructure’s carbon footprint is easy: move to the cloud,” said Matthew Prince, CEO and co-founder of Cloudflare. “At Cloudflare, we’ve built one of the world’s most efficient networks, getting the most out of every watt of energy and every one of our servers. That’s why, with Cloudflare, companies can help hit their sustainability goals without sacrificing security, speed, performance, or innovation.”

The Analysys Mason study found that switching enterprise network services from on-premise devices to Cloudflare services can cut related carbon emissions by up to 96%, depending on the current network footprint. The greatest reduction comes from consolidating services, which improves carbon efficiency by increasing the utilisation of servers that are providing multiple network functions. On-premises devices are designed to host multiple workloads and consume power constantly, but they are only used for part of the day and part of the week. Cloud infrastructure is shared by millions of customers, often all over the world. As a result, cloud providers are able to achieve economies of scale that result in less downtime, less waste, and lower emissions. Furthermore, the Analysys Mason study found that there are additional gains due to the high power usage effectiveness of cloud data centres, and differences in the carbon intensity of generation in the local electricity grid.

“Happy Cog is a full-service digital agency that designs, builds, and markets experiences that engage our clients and their audiences. We’ve relied on Cloudflare for many of those websites and apps because it’s secure, reliable, fast, and affordable—but it also aligns with many of our clients’ sustainability roadmaps and goals,” said Matt Weinberg, Co-Founder and President of Technology at Happy Cog. “Switching our clients from their previous on-premises or other constant-usage infrastructure to Cloudflare’s network and services has let them be greener, more efficient, and more cost-effective. It’s ideal when you can offer your clients a solution that covers all their needs and provides a delightful experience now without having to compromise on their longer-term priorities.”

Report Methodology

Analysys Mason compared a typical hardware stack deployed in an enterprise data center or IT closet and its associated energy consumption to the energy consumption of comparable functions delivered by Cloudflare’s global network. Traffic requirements were translated to energy requirements for both on-premise and cloud-based alternatives. The analysis includes assumptions for the power usage effectiveness (PUE) of cloud data centers vs. on-premises data centers or data rooms and the carbon from electricity, based on the mix of fossil fuel versus renewable energy sources in the local grid.

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