As the Internet offers more services, there will be a corresponding rise in energy usage in data centers. Certain companies have taken giant steps to reduce the adverse effect on the environment by using renewable energy sources such as hydro, geothermal and solar for their energy needs.
A recent Greenpeace report has charged utilities of blocking efforts to utilize renewable energy to run data centers required for cloud hosted services.
Greenpeace has applauded decisions made by Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL), and other Internet giants to meet a rising demand for electricity via solar, wind and other types of environment-friendly sources. However, it regretted the expansion of data center capacity in locations where utilities depending on polluting coal fuel hold sway.
The report stated that the companies are increasingly starting to create coal free and renewably powered areas in their respective organizations.
Some of the companies listed include Duke Energy Corp (NYSE:DUK) in North Carolina, Dominion Resources Inc (NYSE:DCUA) in Virginia, and Taiwan Power Company in Taiwan. According to Greenpeace, these utilities are the major obstacles to creating a green internet. Also, collaborative pressure from data center operators and other electricity customers will be needed to obtain the policy changes for opening the market to firms that offer renewable energy options.
Apple is at the forefront in utilizing clean energy for running Internet operations even in the midst of rapid expansion. On Sunday, Apple introduced renewable energy and environmental protection initiative in China. As part of the initiative, there is a project to promote forest management that is under the aegis of the World Wildlife Fund.
Greenpeace pinpointed online video as a prime driver of consumer Internet data. Although, Google plans to be 100 percent renewably powered in the future, the current utilization is at 35 percent. As per the Greenpeace ranking, Apple got a clean energy index of 100 percent while Google stands at 46 percent. Google got credit for its energy transparency and its targeted renewable energy projects.
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