White Paper

EU Energy Efficiency Directive (EED): Critical Compliance Regulations Impacting Data Center Operations

The continuous surge of digital transformation and cloud-based solutions have ushered in the exponential growth of data centers in the European Union (EU). This phenomenon, while promoting technological advancement, raises significant environmental and sustainability concerns due to the high energy consumption and resource utilization associated with data centers. Recognizing this challenge, the EU adopted the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED) in 2012, subsequently revising it several times, most recently in 2021. The EED mandates stricter energy efficiency measures and penalties for non-compliance, marking a significant milestone towards fostering sustainable practices within the data center industry.

The EU Energy Efficiency Directive (EED) serves as a critical framework in advocating sustainable practices within the data center industry in the European Union. It imposes rigorous guidelines for energy efficiency in data centers, focusing on various metrics such as Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE), Data Center Water Usage (DWU), Data Center Carbon Emissions (DCE), Data Center Economic Efficiency (DEE), and Data Center Social Impact (DSI). The recent updates to the EED mandate transparency and efficient resource utilization, emphasizing the crucial role of data centers in promoting environmental, economic, and social sustainability.

Data centers bigger than 500kW must report energy efficiency figures starting on 15 May 2024.

This brief highlights the significant aspects of the EED and interprets how it informs data center operations and paves the way for enhanced performance and sustainability.

Energy efficiency directive (europa.eu)