There is no one way to pursue green technology and operations—such an effort calls for an integrated approaches that encompass hardware, software and physical facilities. As part of my recent report on the industry's leading green data centers (published in the May issue of INN), I had the chance to talk with Rod Brown, director of the mission-critical group at Nationwide Mutual Insurance, about his company's green initiatives. Nationwide began emphasizing energy efficiency in 2005, he says. “We basically challenged ourselves to be energy-efficient, be environmentally friendly and find ways to do that.” 

Nationwide's New Albany, Ohio, data center is part of the company's dramatic consolidation from 28 to three data centers. The company currently operates out of two consolidated data centers, with the third, greener New Albany center starting to come online this year. Much of this process was possible through virtualization of the company's IT systems—Brown reports that up to 50% of Nationwide's resources are now virtualized. The consolidation “saved us quite a bit of money, and also makes us more energy efficient and greener,” he says. “We've been able to leverage our equipment into two smaller spaces.”

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