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How green is your cloud?

David Mytton | Dec. 16, 2015
The public clouds run by Amazon, Google, IBM, and Microsoft all claim a commitment to green energy -- but the clear leader in this field may surprise you

IBM has a detailed environmental report (the latest version is from 2014) that goes into detail about its various renewables projects, programs, and investments (e.g., wind and biomass in Ireland, plus on-site solar in Zurich, New Delhi, and Massachusetts) but it's difficult to separate the actual detail in relation to SoftLayer and IBM Cloud. IBM specifically states that the majority of its data centers are 10 to 30 years old and improving efficiency requires "thoughtful planning."

Microsoft Azure

Microsoft does not have a fancy Web page that touts its green efforts, instead publishing an annual Citizenship Report to deliver the stats. This report states that Microsoft has been carbon neutral since July 1, 2012, including all of its offices, business flights, and data center operations. According to the 2015 report, this is achieved through 91 percent renewables (the majority is wind, but also biomass, hydro, landfill gas, and on-site solar) compared to 47 percent renewables in 2014.

Microsoft's report goes into significant detail about emissions, including breakdowns of where emissions are coming from as well as other areas of interest around environmental sustainability, such as water use and responsible sourcing.

Microsoft was also among 13 companies pledging action with the U.S. government on climate change this summer.

Source: Infoworld 

 

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