Amazon pledges to operate on 100 per cent renewable energy
20 November 2014
Amazon had promised to run its operations 100 per cent on renewable energy usage for its global footprint, the company announced yesterday, ZD Net reported.
The company gave no firm deadline, but it would likely take many years, perhaps even longer.
The online retailer-turned-cloud giant said on its Amazon Web Services (AWS) site that its long-term commitment would see the company cut its reliance on non-renewable energy sources in the next few years.
Amazon currently stood as one of the "dirtiest" companies on the list of data centre operators and cloud as per Greenpeace's annual scorecard.
However, Amazon was not the first company to make this pledge; Apple, Google, and Facebook had earlier promised to run their vast data centre operations on clean energy, including wind and solar power sources.
The Seattle, Washington-based technology giant introduced its first carbon-neutral data centre region - US West (Oregon) - three years ago, with over three AWS regions now considered clean, including its AWS GovCloud for government customers.
The move by the largest cloud computing company in the world would come as a relief to energy advocates.
ZD Net quoted Greenpeace as saying in an email it sent to ZDNet the "race to build a green internet may be gaining a crucial new competitor."
Meanwhile, wired.com reported that despite pressure from the likes of Greenpeace, Amazon had earlier refused to budge.
Amazon, the largest cloud computing company in the world, provides services where developers and business could rent computing power. A growing number of popular websites and services, including Netflix, Spotify and Pinterest, were using Amazon cloud. In the event Amazon was able to cut its emissions, it could have a significant impact on the tech industry's carbon footprint.
According to commentators, celebrations could, however, wait as Facebook, for example, had in 2012 estimated that it would actually increase its use of non-renewable energy over the next year, even as it added more renewable power to the mix. The company estimated that only 25 per cent of its consumption would come from renewable sources by 2015.