Renewable Energy Factor (REF)

Renewable Energy Factor (REF) is a metric used to evaluate the proportion of renewable energy utilized by a data center relative to the total energy consumed.

Both the Renewable Energy Factor (REF) and Green Power Usage Effectiveness (GPUE) are measurements used to assess the sustainability of a data center, but there is a significant difference between the two metrics.

As mentioned, REF is used to measure the proportion of renewable energy used by a data center in relation to the total energy consumed. On the other hand, GPUE is used to measure how efficiently a data center utilizes green energy.

How to calculate REF?

REF is calculated by dividing the total amount of renewable energy used by the data center (such as hydropower, solar power, or wind power) by the total amount of energy consumed by the data center.

This provides a percentage of the total energy consumption derived from renewable energy.

The significance of high and low REF

A high REF value indicates that the data center uses a significant proportion of renewable energy, thereby reducing its carbon footprint and increasing sustainability. Conversely, a low REF value suggests that the data center utilizes a small portion of renewable energy and measures should be taken to increase green energy production.