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IBM waves green magic wand

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IBM has beefed up its data output while apparently watching its carbon footprint step by adding a new $86m "green data centre" space to its Boulder site in Colorado, USA.

The computer behemoth, which announced the 80,000 square feet expansion of data centre space late last week, said it was responding to customer demand for the firm to reduce energy costs.

IBM recently signed a $480m, five-year agreement with a major US customer and said that the signing had played a key role in its so-called "green" expansion.

It said the extended facility will be one of the biggest IBM data centres of its kind in the world, increasing from 225,000 square feet to 300,000 square feet.

In May this year the firm launched its $1bn Big Green Project campaign focusing on ways it could reduce energy consumption.

Technologies which IBM touted last month included liquid cooling solutions, virtualization systems and power management, all of which it hopes to integrate into the new facility.

Data centres have been notorious for consuming vast quantities of power, as well as pushing out large chunks of carbon emissions to keep the beasts ticking over.

The State's governor Democrat Bill Ritter welcomed IBM's energy efficiency plans and said:

"During the past six months, my administration has made tremendous progress sending a strong message to the rest of the country that Colorado will be among the renewable energy leaders around the world, and certainly here in the United States.

"This data center moves us another step closer to fulfilling that vision."

IBM's new site is expected to start churning out greener data from April 2008.

In related news, Dell has said it will plant 1,000 trees to offset the carbon impact of computing.

The firm will partner with the National Education Computing Conference (NECC) in Atlanta and said that it will plant a tree for the first 1,000 attendees who sign up to Dell's "environmental best practices" pledge.

Tree huggers can exercise their green fingers here. ®

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