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Blog November 2021

The cloud isn’t just vital for your business continuity, it is more sustainable too

Cloud computing helps save energy

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Wim Hoek

Product Marketing Manager

Cloud computing has made our working lives easier.

The Cloud has helped many recycling and waste management businesses ride out the Covid storm by enabling remote working during the pandemic.

These companies could continue to provide their services to municipal and commercial customers because customer service representatives, planners, and other office members were able to work from home.

Without the cloud and the advanced digitalization of business processes, it would have been extremely difficult, if not impossible, for many recycling and waste management companies to keep their operation going especially if office working was not possible due to lockdown measures.

Many waste and recycling companies have learned that digitalization is no longer an advantage, but a necessity for the business to be able to service customers in every condition.

If your business is not there yet, it is time to consider accelerating your digitalization and bringing your services to the cloud too.

Clearly, cloud services like the AMCS Platform, have made digitalization much more reliable. It can guarantee 99.9% up-time, protect you from power outages, fires, flooding, or any other risk that could bring your business to a grinding halt and disappoint your customers with poor service.

The cloud helps you scale automatically to help you deal with peak hours so your customers will always have a great experience when using your services. It also brings extra security protection against cyber-attacks like ransomware and viruses. (Note: read our security article below this blog post to learn more about our Cloud Security story)

However, you might be surprised to learn that cloud computing technologies are much more sustainable too.

We aren’t talking about small savings, but absolutely vast differences in energy use and carbon emissions when compared to local, dedicated servers. The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory projects that if every US company moved email, ERP solutions, and other business software to the cloud, it would save enough electricity to power Los Angeles for a year – this is because the energy consumption of these software applications is reduced by 87% by being deployed in the cloud.

If your goal is to lower your CO2 emissions, this is an easy win.

Cloud providers like Microsoft are offering tools to track and reduce your organization’s carbon emissions - the cloud can help you track and report on your sustainability goals too.

Fighting climate change requires innovation, but digitalization also brings improved margins and better customer service.

It is a misconception that taking sustainability measures, will have a negative impact on your operating margins. It is actually an opportunity that can give your business a competitive advantage.

This is because of benefits such as savings on energy use, especially at a time of soaring costs. But additionally, your sustainability measures will contribute to your customer’s sustainability goals too, making you a preferred business to work with especially those that have ESG reporting requirements.

Cloud computing is more sustainable because:

Why is the cloud energy efficient?

Whether your recycling and waste management business are a multi-national or a small family operation, you might still have your own data storage servers dedicated to you.

In an industry where small margins can make a difference, those recycling and waste firms that have invested in cloud computing are better able to control their energy costs, or even make savings despite rising electricity costs.

Shared data centers optimize resources so that server usage is more efficient. Dedicated servers in a business can be under-utilized using energy to keep running, but storing little data.

Cloud data centers are also likely to upgrade their equipment more regularly to new and more energy-efficient technology, which benefits all of their customers.

When combined with making employees more collaborative and productive, it makes even more sense to switch from on-premise servers to the cloud.

With the cloud-based AMCS Platform, energy efficiency is built into our provision with local energy-hungry servers no longer necessary.

The large economies of scale seen in cloud computing mean that commercial cloud services, in general, can operate with much greater IT operational efficiency than smaller, on-premises deployments.

These are the technologies that are driving energy efficiencies in Data Centers:

This leads to improved Server utilization— this means the same amount of work can be done with fewer servers, which in turn leads to less electricity consumed per useful output. While servers running at higher utilization rates consume more electricity, the overall performance gains more than offset the relative per-unit increase.

Source: The Carbon Benefits of Cloud Computing White Paper

Why Microsoft Azure benefits from economies of scale

Microsoft has been transformed into a cloud services company over the last few years.

Products such as its dedicated Microsoft Azure cloud computing services are able to benefit from economies of scale when it comes to sustainability.

A 2018 study found that using the Microsoft Azure cloud platform can be up to 93% more energy-efficient and 98% more carbon-efficient than on-premises solutions.

This is because of IT efficiencies, savings in energy use from its vast data centers, and investment in cooling technology for these, In addition, Microsoft purchases renewable energy at scale to power its servers, and is committed to using 100% renewable energy by 2025.

But Microsoft also intends to replenish more water than it consumes by 2030, be zero waste by the same year, and have net-zero deforestation from new construction.

By using its size, Microsoft is able to make itself, and its customers more carbon neutral.

This is one of the reasons why AMCS uses Microsoft Azure. Another is because Microsoft Azure has been carbon neutral since 2012, and by 2050 is aiming to remove all of the historic carbon it has emitted.

Therefore, by using the AMCS Platform, you can be assured we are using sustainable infrastructure to power your business.

Environmental understanding through the cloud

The cloud has enabled the development of technologies that have a positive environmental impact. For example, smart energy meters are being rolled out in many countries that help customers monitor energy use through cloud-based real-time information.

Companies are better able to understand their emissions, energy and water usage, fuel costs, telematics, and overall environmental impact, by using cloud-based tools that help them monitor these indicators.

Launched just over a month ago, the Microsoft Emissions Impact Dashboard helps its customers understand, track, report, analyze and reduce carbon emissions associated with their cloud usage.

It enables users to enter on-premises workloads and get an estimate of emissions savings from moving to Microsoft cloud services.

Companies can drill down into emissions by month, service, and data center region.

These types of tools, and using cloud services, means companies can reduce their environmental impact but also operate much more efficiently and effectively than before.

This is why recycling and waste management companies have chosen for AMCS

More than 2750+ customers around the world have chosen to switch their on-premises processes to the AMCS solution because of the economic and sustainability benefits.

By operating their companies more efficiently, profit margins are improved through significant cost savings. Additionally, energy savings from our cloud-based servers and fuel use cuts from route optimization modules, means emissions reduction and cost benefits.

In the final analysis, on-premises processes don’t just cost your business but cost the earth.

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