Sustainable data centres and cloud computing


Have you ever considered the environmental impact when you stream a piece of music, watch a video-clip or do a search on the Internet? How can a data centre operate in the most energy efficient way and reduce its carbon emission? 

These and other related issues were covered at the CONNECT University session ‘Sustainable data centres and cloud computing services’, where experts presented and explored the next generation technologies for future, state-of-the art, data centres.


Pierre Chastanet, Head of Unit DG CONNECT E2 Cloud and Software


  • Barbara Frei, Executive Vice President Europe Operations for Schneider Electric

Barbara Frei, born in 1970 in Maennedorf, Switzerland, is Executive Vice President of Europe Operations since 2019. Until end of 2018 she was responsible for the business in Germany, Austria and Switzerland and CEO of Schneider Electric GmbH in Germany. She completed her studies in mechanical engineering at ETH Zurich, followed by a doctorate in 1998. In addition she is holding a MBA degree of IMD Lausanne, Switzerland.

Title of the presentation: An overview on Digital and Sustainability

  • Bertil Heerink, Head of EU and International Institutions at Environment Agency Austria

Bertil Heerink has gained extensive government policy experience through roles with the Dutch government and the European Commission, in the role helping government and NGO clients navigate the areas of energy, environment, and climate change. Heerink served the Dutch government’s Environment Ministry as head of European Union (EU) affairs, and as counselor of embassy in the permanent representation to the EU. Additionally, he was a member of the EC’s climate change negotiating team, responsible for the political contacts with the United States and Japan. He currently  leads the Department EU and International Institutions of the Environemnt Agency of Austria.

Title of the presentation: Digitalization: avenues for climate change abatement

  • Vlad C. Coroamă, lecturer and senior research associate with the Computer Science Department of the ETH Zurich

Vlad C. Coroamă is a lecturer and senior research associate with the Computer Science Department of the ETH Zurich, Switzerland. For almost two decades, his research has revolved around the relation between digitalisation and sustainability, in particular environmental sustainability. He contributed both methodologically, and with concrete assessments, to understanding the environmental impact of ICT in general and the Internet in particular. Vlad believes that climate change is the most urgent challenge of our times, and one of the greatest challenges ever faced by humankind. This is why today, his main research interest lies in exploring whether and how digitalisation can lead to society-wide dematerialisation and resource efficiency, and how to best exploit this potential.

Title of the presentation: The Energy and Carbon of Internet data flows: is Streaming the new Flying?

  • Paolo Bertoldi, JRC

Title of the presentation: The EU Code of Conduct on Data Centre Energy Efficiency

digital 4 sustainability