Microsoft ramps up plans to make its data centers less thirsty
Microsoft has ramped up its commitments to conserve water and energy in its data centers, laying out new cooling tech and strategies that could push notoriously thirsty and energy hungry servers past their current limits. The company’s latest environmental pledge comes as it plans to dramatically expand the number of data centers it operates around the world, a move that could put more stress on drought-stricken communities unless the company finds ways to use less water. Microsoft plans to slash the amount of water its data centers use by 95 percent by 2024, with the goal of “eventually” eliminating water use. That builds on a commitment it made last year to become “water positive” by the end of the decade, meaning it would replenish more water than it uses for its operations. In 2020, Microsoft also committed to becoming carbon negative by the same deadline, meaning it plans to draw down and store more planet-heating CO2 than it releases.