Being Green One Google at a Time

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     When you think of Google, do you think of “green?” You probably don’t. However, as the world continues to become a “greener” place, Google is incorporating green elements into its buildings, business, and more. The company is revamping their uses of energy through Google Green. Google Green is a website that explains all of the implementations of green practices at Google. The company has employed green practices in its data centers, energy sources, and offices to reduce its carbon footprint.

            Google is going green by reducing energy usage in its data centers around the world. As compared to other companies, Google data centers only use 50% of energy, which is not only better for the environment, but has saved the company over a billion dollars. According to an independent study done by Stanford professor Jonathan Koomey, the average data center uses between 1% and 1.5% of the world’s electricity. Based on this study, Google only contributes to 0.01% of the world’s electricity use as the company uses 1% of Koomey’s estimate. The company has even received certifications because of its great environmental standards.

            In addition to using less energy, Google is also using renewable energy. The company buys its electricity from wind farms that are near the data centers. By doing so, Google is using clean energy AND helping out the wind farm owners keep up their farms and create new facilities. In 2011 alone, Google used 33% of renewable energy. The 33% consisted of energy that Google bought and energy the company already had in the grid. With each little step, Google is helping to make the world greener.

            Its employees started many of Google’s green protocols within the company. Some of these initiatives include solar panel roofs and bike-to-work programs to create a more sustainable environment. With the company’s sustainable commute program, it is keeping 3,00 cars off the road and saving over 40,000,000 miles by implementing a shuttle program and have electric car charging stations. Also, the Mountain View campus uses 1.7 MW of solar panels to produce over 3 million kWh of clean energy. That is a huge amount and from just one location.

     Through these efforts to become greener, Google is eliminating over 16,000 metric tons of CO2 each year. The company still makes an impact on the earth, so it invests in other projects to help make the world a better place. The employees are developing new products that are not only green on their part, but allows the consumers to be green also. Google continues its work each year in hopes to promote a green environment to other companies and consumers. For more information on Google Green, visit the website at http://www.google.com/green/.

            

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