VMware Cloud Disaster Recovery

Reduce Your DR Carbon Footprint by 80%

Reduce Your DR Carbon Footprint by up to 80% (or more) with VMware Cloud DR

(Co-authored with Heiko Dinger)

Enabling Carbon-Efficient Digital Transformation

Earlier this year, I shared how VMware Cloud Disaster Recovery can save 60% on the total cost of ownership (TCO) for disaster recovery (DR), which is a fantastic customer benefit. As compelling as that is, there is another great reason to consider VMware’s latest DRaaS solution – it can also cut your DR carbon footprint by 80% (or more)!

VMware is committed to enabling carbon-efficient digital transformation by reducing the carbon in our customers’ digital operations – you can read more about it in our 2030 Agenda and 2020 Global Impact Report. This value is not new to us. From 2003 to 2019, our product portfolio has resulted in an estimated carbon emissions avoidance of 1.2 billion metrics tons. In 2019 alone, the total emissions avoided were equivalent to removing nearly 33 million cars from the road.[1] So it is no wonder that we are so excited about the decarbonizing benefits from utilizing the public cloud for DR.

The Equivalent of 40 Fewer Cars on the Road from 1 Deployment in 1 Year

How does VMware Cloud DR deliver a significantly lower carbon footprint, compared to an on-premises DR solution?

The biggest contributor is not having idle infrastructure capacity when it’s not being used for DR testing or failover. VMware Cloud DR allows customers to only spin up this capacity during DR operations. But when you do need to test or failover, you can power-on 100s of virtual machines as soon as infrastructure is available. So, there’s no trade-off between low TCO and fast recovery times. Another carbon-reducing contributor is the relentless push from VMware and AWS to continuously reduce power consumption in VMware Cloud on AWS (e.g. AWS initiative on renewable energy-powered data centers), which provides the testing and failover capacity for VMware Cloud DR.

Let’s look at scenario of a 500 VM data center environment based in Germany with an average VM size of 300 GBs. For on-premises DR, you would need approximately 444 MWh of electricity each year to power 28 servers with the accompanying storage, networking, racks, and physical facilities (assuming a data center PUE of 1.7). In contrast, that same 500 VM environment protected by VMware Cloud DR (on-demand deployment model, failover to EU (Frankfurt) region, with 6 test days and 5 failover days per year) would only consume 57 MWh of electricity each year (inclusive of AWS data center energy) , which is 386 MWh less. That’s an 87% lower electricity consumption!

386 MWh saved translates to 185 metric tons of CO2 avoided, which translates to 40 fewer cars on the road or enough power for 31 homes or over 3000 trees to sequester[2]. This scenario shows the carbon savings from just 1 VMware Cloud DR deployment. For the potential global benefit, multiply this savings by the number of customers who have and will adopt VMware Cloud DR.

Comparison of power savings and CO2 reduction

Good for Your Business, Good for the Planet, and More Governments Stepping In

Now, if up to 60% total cost of ownership savings, up to 80% carbon footprint reduction and the fact that we are all fellow travelers on spaceship Earth aren’t reason enough, then another reason to evaluate DRaaS now is that governments around the world are pursuing or have already legislated net zero carbon emission targets.[3]

VMware is here to help. The TCO and sustainability calculations in this and prior blogs are from a VMware team that can help you estimate the same for your own environment. As a SaaS solution, VMware Cloud DR is easy to deploy and can be up and running in as little as 5 days. If you’d like additional assistance, VMware partners and professional services can help you plan and design your DR plan.

Now is a great time to evaluate VMware Cloud DR for your DR needs. Links to get started:

[1] VMware 2020 Force for Good Global Impact Report

[2] Refer to EPA,

[3] Megan Darby, Climate Home News, “Which countries have a net zero carbon goal?”, 14 June 2019.