Digital Realty expands renewable generator fuel rollout

Digital Realty has announced the expanded deployment of hydrotreated vegetable oil (HVO), a renewable fuel that is a replacement for conventional diesel fuel in generators, at sites in California and Oregon. This expansion marks the company’s first implementation of HVO in the U.S., and with this deployment, Digital Realty will be using HVO in seven global markets, covering nearly 15% of its global operating portfolio.

HVO, which can mix with conventional diesel to power existing generators, is being deployed at three sites: Digital Realty’s PDX12 facility in Hillsboro, Oregon; SC1 in Santa Clara, California, and LAX12 in El Segundo, California. With the deployment of HVO at these sites, Digital Realty will avoid approximately 12,000 metric tons CO2 emissions[1].

The expansion of Digital Realty’s HVO rollout to the U.S. builds upon its successful deployment in Europe, where HVO is in use at 20+ sites. In France, the use of HVO fuel has reduced the company’s fuel-related lifecycle carbon emissions by 90%, all while maintaining operational efficiency and customer satisfaction. Since then, Digital Realty has deployed the fuel across multiple sites in Amsterdam and Madrid.

"By expanding our HVO rollout to the U.S., we’re further expanding our commitment to sustainability, delivering tangible results in reducing carbon emissions while maintaining operational excellence. This is a significant milestone in our pursuit of solutions that address the environmental impact of backup generators at data centres. We are pleased to be adopting HVO in the U.S. for data centres and to be setting a new standard for data centre sustainability worldwide,” said Aaron Binkley, Vice President of Sustainability, Digital Realty.

This expansion aligns with Digital Realty’s ongoing commitment to its global sustainability goals. In 2020, the company joined the Science-Based Targets initiative (SBTi), pledging to reduce Scope 1 and 2 emissions (direct and indirect company emissions) by 68% and Scope 3 emissions (indirect emissions in the value chain) by 24% by 2030. The use of renewable diesel fuels significantly reduces the embodied carbon of the fuel used in diesel generators, contributing to the reduction of Scope 3 emissions.

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