Google Aiming to Attain 100 % Self-sufficiency in Renewable Energy by 2017

A “landmark” moment for team Google – target to power 100 percent of their global facilities with renewable energy by 2017.

Google Aiming to Attain 100 % Self-sufficiency in Renewable Energy by 2017

Google, already being hailed as a “trendsetter” in terms of wind and solar energy corporate purchases, has plans to achieve one hundred percent self-sufficiency in renewable energy by 2017, which actually means that by next year, all of Google’s facilities including its corporate offices and data centres will be powered by the wind or solar energy or other renewable sources.

In addition to being a great display of their commitment towards the environment – the green revolution, if you like – they will be cutting down on power costs to the company by a considerable margin with the help of solar, the wind and other renewable sources of power.

“We are convinced this is good for business, this is not about greenwashing. This is about locking in prices for us in the long term. Increasingly, renewable energy is the lowest cost option,” said Marc Oman, EU energy lead at Google. In the same breath, he goes on to say, “Our founders are convinced climate change is a real, immediate threat, so we have to do our part.”

Now, In terms of priority, whether it’s cost-cutting or a pledge towards the green revolution, it’s a win-win situation either way.

The company is already “the world’s largest corporate buyer of renewable power,” SVP of technical infrastructure Urs Holzle wrote in a blog post announcing the news, and it now plans to “[directly buy] enough wind and solar electricity annually to account for every unit of electricity our operations consume, globally.”

The Google logo is spelled out in heliostats (mirrors that reflect sunlight) at the Ivanpah solar electric generating system in the Mojave Desert near the California-Nevada border. Photograph: Steve Marcus/Reuters
The Google logo is spelled out in heliostats (mirrors that reflect sunlight) at the Ivanpah solar electric generating system in the Mojave Desert near the California-Nevada border. Photograph: Steve Marcus/Reuters

“The science tells us that tackling climate change is an urgent global priority,” Holzle wrote. “We believe the private sector, in partnership with policy leaders, must take bold steps and that we can do so in a way that leads to growth and opportunity. And we have a responsibility to do so – to our users and the environment.”

However, it would be unfair not mention the names of other major contributors towards the green cause, even though their main priority may be cost-effectiveness – it doesn’t really matter – as the end result is beneficial both ways, as already mentioned earlier.

Google is not the only tech company, or the only major company, for that matter, that has made renewable energy purchases a key part of what it does.

Apple, for instance, has also announced major clean energy buys in the United States and China. Other major buyers include Microsoft and Facebook.

Other mentionables in this green race are Rackspace, Salesforce, and Box among a few others.

“You’re seeing a number of companies in tech, a number of countries outside of tech, who are all following this path,” as told by Gary Demasi, Google’s head of global infrastructure and energy, to The Washington Post, “Developers will tell you that a very large proportion of their new projects are coming from corporate.”

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