EED audit and energy saving obligations for Dutch data centers

EED European Energy Efficiency Directive data center advice

The European Union’s ambitious “Fit for 55” package aims to put the EU on track to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels. A key component is the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED), which sets binding measures to help the EU reach its energy efficiency targets. For data centers in the Netherlands, this means navigating not just the EED requirements, but also country-specific regulations.

Energy Saving Obligations in the Netherlands

The Netherlands has introduced additional energy saving measures that go beyond the EU EED:

1. Energy Saving Notification Obligation: Companies using more than 50,000 kWh of electricity or 25,000 m3 of natural gas annually must implement all energy saving measures with a payback period of 5 years or less. They must report these measures to the competent authority every 4 years.

2. Energy Saving Investigation Obligation: Very large energy users consuming over 10 million kWh of electricity or 170,000 m3 of natural gas must conduct a detailed investigation every 4 years analyzing their site, processes, energy use, and CO2 reduction measure. This replaces the notification obligation for process-related energy.

These Dutch obligations have lower applicability thresholds and require mandatory implementation of identified measures, unlike the EED audits which are more focused on identifying opportunities.

Implications for Data Centers

Data centers in the Netherlands need to assess which obligations apply based on their energy consumption levels. Those subject to the investigation obligation had to submit their first report by December 1, 2023. Any data centers that missed this deadline should take immediate action to conduct the required analysis and submit their reports to the competent authority as soon as possible to avoid potential enforcement measures.

In addition, data centers with an installed IT power demand over 500 kW must register in the EU EED portal and report key sustainability metrics annually. The first reporting deadline covering the period from May 15, 2023 to May 14, 2024 is September 15, 2024. Data centers need to start collecting the required data now to be prepared for this submission.

EkkoSense can play a crucial role in helping datacenters meet these obligations:

1. Providing energy consumption data: Ekkosense’s continuous monitoring solutions provide the granular, auditable energy consumption data needed for EED reporting (Table 0.1).

2. Tracking implemented measures: If Ekkosense’s tools were used to monitor and verify savings from projects, this data could flow directly into the EED audit report to show measures implemented and achieved savings (Table 0.2).

3. Identifying energy saving measures: Ekkosense’s AI-powered analytics can uncover optimization opportunities to include in the Energy Saving Investigation reports. Their experience across many datacenters can also suggest proven measures like the Effective Measures List Codes PH1, PH2 and PH3 related to cooling setpoints, variable speed fans, and free cooling.

4. Feasibility analysis and ongoing optimization: Beyond just reporting, Ekkosense can analyze the feasibility of efficiency measures across datacenter estates and provide continuous monitoring, control and optimization to actually implement improvements and track progress.

How EkkoSense Can Help

Regardless of the specific legislative requirements, EkkoSense’s powerful EkkoSoft Critical platform can help data centers optimize their energy usage and streamline compliance:

1. Calculating savings potential: EkkoSoft uses AI-powered analytics to uncover energy optimization opportunities and quantify the potential data centre savings in energy, cost and carbon across the entire estate.

2. Providing energy consumption data: The platform’s real-time data centre monitoring capabilities can provide the granular, auditable energy consumption and utilization data needed for regulatory reporting.

3. Identifying energy saving measures: EkkoSoft not only identifies optimization measures, but also enables scenario planning to assess their impact and build the business case for implementation.

4. Tracking progress and data center optimization: With EkkoSoft, data centers can continuously monitor performance, track progress against energy reduction goals, and enable ongoing optimization.

The beauty of EkkoSoft is its flexibility – it can slice and dice the data to support a wide range of reporting requirements and use cases. Whether it’s an EED audit, a Dutch Energy Saving Investigation, or an internal optimization initiative, EkkoSoft provides the powerful, data-driven insights data centers need to improve their energy performance. See it for yourself by booking a 1:1 demo.

In the midst of the complex and evolving regulatory landscape, EkkoSense offers data centers a comprehensive solution to streamline compliance, drive efficiency, and unlock the full value of their data. By leveraging these capabilities, data centers can not only meet their obligations, but also establish themselves as sustainability leaders in the digital infrastructure space. In summary, while data centers are ultimately responsible for meeting the Dutch and EU Energy Efficiency Directive regulations, partnering with Ekkosense can make the process much more streamlined and successful. Ekkosense’s data-driven platform and expertise is well-aligned to the current and upcoming requirements around datacenter energy efficiency and reporting.

Remco Frijling represents EkkoSense in the Benelux region. Contact him via [email protected] or connect via LinkedIn.

Not in the Netherlands? Check out Venessa Moffat‘s blog “The Energy Efficiency Directive (EED EU) – In the midst of chaos, there is also opportunity”