Infrastructure Masons (iMasons), a non-profit professional association for the data center industry, has launched an initiative that aims to reduce the carbon footprint of digital infrastructure.
To date, more than 70 organizations have joined the iMasons Climate Accord (ICA), including hyperscale companies AWS, Google, Meta, and Microsoft, along with more than 40 colocation providers, and data center product, service, and investment firms.
The current goal of the ICA is to identify and establish an independent governing body to develop a standard methodology for measuring carbon emissions in data center power, materials, and products.
‘Carbon footprint’ is a relatively common term used when discussing emissions. However, there is currently no universally accepted way to measure ‘embodied carbon’ – the carbon footprint generated by a product or service before it is put to intended use. This can originate from the mining, manufacturing, transportation, and other steps involved in the production of goods.
“We are excited to help create an open standard for reducing the embodied carbon in data centers, and work with equipment manufacturers to improve energy efficiency across the industry,” said Joe Kava, vice president of Data Centers at Google.
It's not easy being green
iMasons was launched in 2016 by Dean Nelson, who previously designed and built data centers for companies like Uber and eBay.
The original iMasons advisory council largely consisted of businesses in the Billionaire Builders Club – members of Google, Microsoft, eBay, Facebook, Switch, and Digital Realty. “These individuals have personally built and managed more than $1B in infrastructure projects, each,” Nelson said in the launch post.
The ICA aims to expand the work of the organization to further help the environment. According to the press release, “The work from this body will influence market-based buying decisions to drive the industry to carbon neutrality as the first step to achieving planetary net zero.”
The site is accepting pledges; participation is open to both individuals and companies.
"Stack's commitment to sustainability initiatives continues to expand beyond our internal goals, and we are proud to pledge our support for the industry standards of carbon measuring and reporting outlined in iMasons Climate Accord," said Brian Cox, CEO of colocation provider Stack Americas and iMasons Advisory Council member.
You can see the entire list of the iMasons Climate Accord members below: