Developers in some parts of London could face a ban on new developments until 2035 as data centers consume too much of the power grid’s capacity.
According to sources reported by the Financial times (opens in new tab)the Greater London Authority (GLA) wrote to developers that it could take “more than a decade” for power to be up to scratch.
Hillingdon, Ealing and Hounslow are three affected areas, which the FT estimates account for 11% of London’s housing stock.
What is causing the problem?
The GLA stressed that “data centers use large amounts of electricity, the equivalent of towns or small towns, to power servers and ensure resiliency in service,” in the note.
David O’Leary, a policy director at the Home Builders Federation, said “25 units or more will be affected,” told the paper the increasing use of low-carbon technology such as electric vehicles could exacerbate the problem.
West London has seen a plethora of data center developments in recent years.
These include developments by Ark Data Centers in Western Avenue, Park Royal and campus of UK data center operator Virtus in Stockley Park.
Some steps are being taken to resolve the issue. The National Grid and utility company SSEN are said to be upgrading the network’s capacity in the note, but this “could take years”.
Not only does an electricity shortage have consequences for data centers, extreme weather also plays a role.
UK data centers belonging to Google Cloud and Oracle were impacted last week as the Brish heat wave put them out of action due to the 40C (104F) weather.
- Need to move your storage away from remote data centers? Check out our guide to the best bare metal servers