Houston's Energy Corridor - A Gateway to the Internet
If your business is new to the clean energy and renewable energy industry, you will be surprised to learn that the Energy Corridor in Houston is fast becoming the gateway to clean energy and the Internet. As large and important as the energy industry is around the world, Houston, Texas has an unmistakable advantage among the majority of cities across the United States because of its dense concentration of energy companies in a central location within Houston, appropriately called the "Energy Corridor".
Houston's Energy Corridor Goes Green
The Energy Corridor has realized and responded to demands to be more efficient with energy use and production. Smart decisions are required for monetary and energy sake, but most importantly, smart decisions are necessary so that our economy, largely driven by the Internet, can grow more efficiently.
The City of Houston has made substantial moves toward achieving initiatives that improve air, land and water quality; and support and expand renewable energy, energy efficiency, green buildings, recycling and composting, alternative and clean transportation, local food production and more livable and vibrant neighborhoods.
The city has launched the first annual Green Office Challenge, an outreach to businesses to reduce energy consumption, waste generation and water use.
City of Houston Mayor Annise Parker commented on the green movement in Houston,
We’re challenging businesses to do what we’ve done with the city. We want them to do things such as changing light bulbs to more energy efficient ones, putting in timers for lights, that sort of thing. One of the benefits of this program is that there is grant money available. The challenge is not only about saving money and improving the environment, it’s also important for human health and well-being.
It will bring sustainability experts together with businesses and property managers to learn and engage in green building practices through free workshops and training.
So far, six management districts have signed on: Downtown, Greenspoint, Upper Kirby/Greenway, the Energy Corridor, Westchase and Uptown/Galleria.
Data Centers, the Internet and Web Hosting
It has been estimated that more than 1.8 trillion gigabytes of digital information are created world-wide each year. And in data centers around the globe, rows and rows of energy-hungry servers, networking equipment and mainframe computers, racks, cabling, management systems and network gear required to deliver computing services to the organization and remain online twenty-four hours a day all the while creating heat and consuming vast amounts of electricity, often wastefully. Data centers run their facilities at maximum capacity every single day.
The Internet is powered by online companies which typically run their websites around-the-clock, whatever the demand. As a result, the majority of data centers squander up to ninety percent or more of the electricity they pull off the electric grid. Indeed, Data centers are among utility company's most valued customers. Many utility companies around the country recruit the resources for the almost unvarying round-the-clock loads required to keep a data center online.
Data Centers and the Houston Economy
Data centers are a good source of tax income for local economies. They don't noticeably pollute, their operations are quiet, they produce large tax revenue for local municipalities, and they stick around. Data centers, do not, however, create a lot of jobs—only around fifty employment positions for the average 100,000 to 200,000 data center facility—but the jobs that are created are well-paying jobs with impressive benefits. As such, municipalities are actively offering attractive incentives to web hosting companies in an effort to encourage large web hosting conglomerates to build their data centers within their city limits.
Municipalities, provincial and state governments all offer incentives to lure data centers.
The Houston Energy Corridor—Where Energy Moves
The Houston Energy Corridor is a well-planned urban area in West Houston with the largest concentration of international energy companies from around the world. The Energy Corridor is a progressive community is home to several of the largest international energy companies in the world as well as 300 multi-national, national and local companies. With an educated workforce comprised of more than 78,000 employees, the Energy Corridor is the third largest employment center in the region and one of Houston’s premier areas for an active, healthy lifestyle. There is a direct correlation between energy and the Internet, specifically web hosting.
The City's Information Technology Department
The Information Technology Department was created by the City in 2002 to improve the organization of Information Technology throughout the City by using emerging and proven technologies throughout the City, improve services to citizens and employees as well as reduce security and system failure risks. In the Cities current year 20 million dollar annual IT Department budget, one of the department's prime objectives is to begin the process of consolidating city data centers and servers to reduce the expenses and implement an effective Disaster Recovery Plan.
Houston Energy Corridor—a Special District within Houston
The Energy Corridor is a special district in Houston and as such, it receives additional police protection, business development assistance as well as public space improvements and maintenance.
Network PoPs in Houston
An Internet point of presence is an access point to the Internet. It is a physical location that houses servers, routers, ATM switches and digital/analog call aggregators. Among the many benefits to a data center on a major Internet PoPs, include low latency, no packet loss, no single point of failure
Houston serves as a central hub for Internet point of presence PoPs in North America and allows Houstonians to broaden their reach into primary and secondary domestic markets.
The Energy Corridor of Houston is is right at home in Houston—a city the prizes clean air, clean drinking water, and now, renewable energy.