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Greenpeace Raises Alarm on Datacenter Emissions

With the iPad days away from hitting the market, Greenpeace took the occasion to issue a report warning of the environmental impact from the new datacenters and server farms that will be built to handle the glut of information being shared and stored in the cloud. Why the iPad? Because it's one of the "quintessential cloud-computing devices," according to the group.

But it's not just about Apple. Far from it. Greenpeace urges all IT firms doing business in the cloud to consider clean, renewable energy sources when setting up new datacenters or other computing facilities.

Server Watch takes a look at Greenpeace's appeal.


The environmental activist group Greenpeace is warning that the emergence of cloud computing technologies could lead to a massive spike in carbon emissions. It is calling on IT firms to make clean energy a priority as they open new datacenters to handle the glut of data moving to the cloud.

The group, famed for harassing whaling ships on the high seas and staging protests at nuclear power plants, released its latest report on the eve of the commercial release of Apple's iPad, one of the "quintessential cloud-computing devices" that are reshaping the way people interact with information. As a consequence, IT firms find themselves having to open new facilities to handle the glut of data people are storing and sharing in the cloud, and face the choice of powering them with clean, renewable energy sources such as water, or the often cheaper coal-based power.

"To be clear: We are not picking on Apple. We are not dissing the iPad," the group said. "But maybe someone can come up with an app that calculates the carbon footprint of using different Web sites based on their location and energy deals."

Read the full story at Server Watch:
Greenpeace Warns of Data Center Emissions in Cloud Computing Set Ups