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A new Greenpeace campaign is committed to drawing awareness to Facebook’s reliance on non-renewable sources. The campaign is centered around the idea that the company’s data center in Prineville, Oregon will depend partially on energy derived from coal. The center has not yet been completed, but Facebook has already reacted to the Greenpeace campaign.
The company states that the location for their new facility was carefully chosen so that they could rely on the climate to keep the center cool, and not be forced to install energy-guzzling mechanical chillers. They claim the building will be LEED Gold certified, and will rely on recycled water to power an evaporative cooling system. In addressing the issue of coal, Facebook claims to be at the mercy of their power provider. They say that: “electrons powering that data center are produced by the various sources (e.g. hydro, natural gas, coal, geothermal, nuclear, etc.) the provider uses in proportions similar to the mix of sources used.”
The power provider for the Oregon facility, “Pacific Power, has an energy mix that is weighted slightly more toward coal than the national average,” according to their official Greenpeace response. Facebook claims that Pacific Power’s long-term plan will move away from coal.
The company has long claimed to be a proud supporter of sustainability, but many are still not impressed with the measures they plan to take in Prineville.
The Greenpeace initiative is just one of many drawing attention to the energy usage of major companies, and is a good example of consumer awareness playing an important role in how businesses power up. Increasingly, citizens are asking companies to consider the triple bottom line: people, profit, and the planet. By calling out to companies to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, we can ensure that they do their part to limit their negative impact on the environment.
Join the Greenpeace Facebook group.
Read the list of the Enivornmental Protection Agency (EPA) National Top 50 Green Power Partnership Businesses.