Is Salesforce Overstating Green IT Claims?
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How significant is the environmental benefit of moving to cloud computing? According to SaaS king Salesforce (NYSE: CRM), a lot.
Salesforce just released the results of a study it sponsored that shows running applications in its cloud computing environment instead of on-premises can greatly lessen those applications' carbon footprint.
"The study estimates that customers of Salesforce.com's cloud computing services produce 95 percent less carbon, on average, compared with running equivalent software in on-premise application servers," Salesforce said in a release.
Key to Salesforce's -- and some other cloud services providers', efficiency has to do with what's called "multi-tenancy." It's the ability to serve many clients with a single copy of the application -- sharing the infrastructure in a manner similar to an apartment building. It results, the company said, in much greater efficiency and many fewer servers -- which translates into lower CO2 emissions.
"The Salesforce.com community saved an estimated 170,900 tons of carbon in 2010 -- the equivalent of taking 37,000 cars off the road, or avoiding the consumption of 19.5 million gallons of gas," Salesforce said.
While agreeing there are definitely CO2 savings to be had, some analysts question the lofty claims of the report for a variety of reasons. Datamation has the details.