Power usage effectiveness, or PUE, is a ratio that measures how effectively a data center uses its power. PUE is calculated by dividing the total amount of electricity entering the facility by the electricity used to run the IT equipment within the facility. For example, an ideal PUE of 1.0—100% efficiency—would mean that 100% of the electricity entering the data center powers the IT equipment. However, the IT equipment requires the support of cooling, lighting, and other infrastructure, indicated by any amount over 1. For example, a data center with a PUE of 1.5 uses 50% additional power over and above the IT load to support the IT equipment.

Why is PUE important for data centers?

Electricity is the highest data center cost. As a result, data center operators pursue energy efficiency within their facilities to minimize expenses for themselves and their tenants. For data center operators, PUE is a measuring stick against which to monitor operational optimization. PUE is also helpful to tenants as an indicator of how their data center provider minimizes energy costs while maintaining consistent performance and uptime.

Why is PUE growing in importance?

According to the Wall Street Journal, America is wrestling with the worst energy crisis in nearly five decades—a period of high prices and limited supply—which directly affects Public Utility Districts (PUDs). Finding PUDs with additional power is becoming more difficult for operators, so finding available data center capacity is becoming more difficult for customers.

As electricity becomes a more precious commodity, a facility’s PUE grows substantially in importance.

Sabey Data Centers is actively building in multiple locations with available power, sources competitive power rates in its markets, and celebrates its industry-low PUE ratios. Sabey’s innovative designs and award-winning operations team allow their facilities to achieve extreme energy efficiency. For example, Sabey’s most efficient facility in Washington state operates at an average annual  PUE of 1.13 and has been rated as more efficient than 100% of data centers nationwide by ENERGY STAR. 


As the energy crisis intensifies, simply finding a data center provider with the available electrical power your deployment requires can be challenging. Afterward, Power Usage Effectiveness is the most vital metric when evaluating a provider’s overall energy efficiency. When data centers select the right energy provider and implement various best practices, they benefit their customers in the long term. 

For information about Sabey’s PUE track record, visit: https://sabeydatacenters.com/