Google Cloud reaches 100% renewable goal

Google has announced that 100% of the power that supports their cloud services is now generated from renewable energy – a target they set out just over a year ago.

The tech giant has also said they have generated more green energy than it needs to power its data centres and offices from renewable sources including solar and wind power.

For every kilowatt-hour of energy that Google consume, they add a matching kilowatt-hour of renewable energy to a power grid somewhere.

However, that may not be used to directly power its own data centres or offices, because the projects it supports may be in different geographical areas to its facilities, or the power generated at a different time.

Urs Hölzle, Google’s senior vice president of technical infrastructure said: ‘Over the course of 2017, across the globe, for every kilowatt hour of electricity we consumed, we purchased a kilowatt hour of renewable energy from a wind or solar farm that was built specifically for Google.

This makes us the first public cloud, and company of our size, to have achieved this feat.’

‘What’s important to us is that we are adding new clean energy sources to the electrical system, and that we’re buying that renewable energy in the same amount as what we’re consuming, globally and on an annual basis,’ he added.

The company have said that they will continue to invest in new energy sources as demand for its products grow as well as looking for opportunities in developing markets who are not currently operating renewable energy sources.

‘This program has always been the first step for us, but it is an important milestone in our race to a carbon-free future,’ said Mr Hölzle.

‘We do want to get to a point where renewables and other carbon-free energy sources actually power our operations every hour of every day. It will take a combination of technology, policy and new deal structures to get there, but we’re excited for the challenge. We can’t wait to get back to work.’

Thomas Barrett

Thomas Barrett

Thomas Barrett is the editor of Environment Journal. Follow him on Twitter

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