Green loans for data centres to help climate change

Singtel demonstrates its commitment to environmental sustainability by securing a significant US$535m green loan to finance its data centre operations

Data centres are the backbone of the digital age, housing the servers and other equipment that power our increasingly interconnected world. However, these massive facilities come at a significant environmental cost as data centres are among the most energy-intensive buildings on the planet, consuming anywhere from 1% to 3% of global electricity.

The energy consumption of data centres has been on the rise, driven by the rapid growth of data generation and the increasing reliance on digital services. As the demand for cloud computing, artificial intelligence, and other data-intensive applications continues to surge, the energy consumption of data centres is projected to grow even further.

In response to these concerns, the data centre industry has embarked on a journey towards greater energy efficiency. Technological advancements, such as more efficient servers, liquid cooling systems, and innovative data centre designs, are helping to reduce the energy footprint of these facilities, as well as the adoption of renewable energy sources. By shifting to clean energy sources, data centre operators can significantly reduce their environmental impact and contribute to a more sustainable future.

Green investments for environmental commitment

In a significant move to align its financial strategies with environmental commitments, Asia's leading communications technology group, Singtel has secured a substantial US$535m green loan for its data centre subsidiaries, DCW and DCKC. This five-year loan, provided by prominent financial institutions, including DBS, OCBC, Standard Chartered Bank, and UOB, highlights Singtel's dedication to sustainable data centre operations and its broader environmental goals.

This landmark green loan will be used to refinance existing borrowings and support the ongoing operations of DC West and DC Kim Chuan, two of Singtel's flagship data centres. Notably, both have already achieved the highest attainable green building certification, Green Mark Platinum, which demonstrates Singtel's unwavering commitment to environmental sustainability.

The loan agreement states that DC West and DC Kim Chuan must maintain at least a Green Mark GoldPlus certification, a stringent environmental standard set by Singapore's Building and Construction Authority. This requirement reinforces Singtel's commitment to continuous improvement in its data centre operations' environmental impact.

A more sustainable future

Arthur Lang, Singtel Group CEO says: “Singtel is committed to aligning our borrowings with our environmental objectives, and we are pleased to work with DBS, OCBC, Standard Chartered Bank and UOB to invest in a more sustainable future for everyone.

“We will build on the success of our sustainability-linked loans, bonds and other efforts, to further expand our portfolio of green financing initiatives under Olives, Singtel Group’s sustainable financing programme. We will also continue exploring ways to incorporate technologies such as liquid cooling and AI to further improve the efficiency of all our data centres, including our upcoming DC Tuas.” 

The successful acquisition of this green loan not only demonstrates Singtel's financial strength but also highlights its position as a pioneer in sustainable data centre practices. This move aligns with the company's broader sustainability strategy, which encompasses initiatives across its entire operations, from energy efficiency and waste reduction to responsible sourcing and community engagement.

By securing this green loan, Singtel has taken a significant step towards ensuring that its data centre operations are conducted in an environmentally responsible manner, contributing to a more sustainable future for the data centre industry and the broader environment.

When looking to the future, Singtel's data centre portfolio is set to expand significantly, with a total combined capacity of over 155MW once the upcoming sites in Singapore, Indonesia, and Thailand are operational in 2025. This represents a substantial increase from the current capacity of 62MW. Additionally, the portfolio has room to scale up to more than 200MW, providing ample room for future growth.

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Other magazines that may be of interest - Mobile Magazine.

Please also check out our upcoming event - Sustainability LIVE Net Zero on 6 and 7 March 2024.  

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