Thursday, November 29, 2012

Greenpeace pranks Amazon to be green

Greenpeace has begun to look into the clean energy reality of some of the largest IT companies with their "Clean the Cloud" initiative and recently published a clean cloud report. To improve their carbon footprint, they also successfully applied pressure to Facebook with their "No more coal" campaign and authored this amusing video. Facebook has since responded with a new commitment to clean energy and located their most recent data center in Sweden.

In the last week Greenpeace has also pranked Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS is running a tremendous amount of hardware in the cloud. Some estimates say it is up to 500,000 servers.  But what are these servers powered by? In order to start the conversation Greenpeace put up a "green AWS" website falsely claiming clean powered services. The background is an interesting comparison: The big players have different levels of transparency, commitment and actual reality of renewable energy.

While Workday is nowhere near the size of the big players in terms of server count, it is good to know that we have a 100% clean power commitment through the purchase of RECs. While Greenpeace cites numerous more directly impactful options, our current use of colocation providers and the comparatively smaller number of servers makes RECs for now the best available option to mitigate emissions.

No comments: