Amazon web services to be powered by renewable energy

Mike Allen
January 20, 2015

"Amazons plans of renewing their power supply through renewable energy have finally taken flight. With more and more ISPs moving towards environmentally friendly practices, people were starting to wonder when Amazon would jump on the green energy bandwagon.

Greenpeace, a leading organization focused on bettering the environment, has been pushing for Amazon to make a move towards becoming more environmentally friendly. In 2014, Greenpeace said that Amazon was ""the least transparent"" of any company they evaluated - much farther behind than its competitors. Since 2011, Apple has invested $55 million, Microsoft has invested $100 million andGoogle has invested $55 million in renewable energy sources. It is well overdue for Amazon to join its peers.

In November of 2014, Amazon announced their long term goal of using""100 percent renewable energy"" in an attempt to better their global infrastructure footprint. Since that announcement, very little was said about what their plans included or when they would be put into place, until now. Amazon recently announced a 13 year agreement with Pattern Energy Group. The agreement will support the construction of a 150 megawatt wind powered farm located in Benton County, Indiana.

In a press release, Amazon said the wind farm would be named the Amazon Web Services Wind Farm (Fowler Ridge). As one of the largest cloud computing companies in the world, the switch to renewable energy is an enormous win for the environmental groups and green energy. Amazon Web Services support some of the world's most popular websites including Netflix and Pinterest. Lowering data center power consumption will help to significantly reduce the company's carbon footprint.

Amazon further explained that they expect the wind farm to start generating approximately 500,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of wind power annually as early as January 2016. To fully understand this, Amazon estimates that this will save the amount of power that is used by approximately 46,000 US homes in a year.

Is Amazon finally on the path towards becoming more environmentally friendly? Greenpeace and others are not so sure. According toWIRED, IT Analyst Gary Cook ""pointed out that, unlike its peers, Amazon hasn't published a roadmap outlining its plans to wean itself off dirty energy. That makes it harder to assess how serious the company really is"".

Only time will tell. It is important to remain patient and realize that the switch to green energy is not simple and could take years to complete. ""With the world's largest public cloud apparently joining others in committing to power with 100 percent renewable energy, the race to build a green Internet may be gaining a crucial new competitor,"" It is progress, not perfection right? Keeping our fingers crossed, we can only hope that this is the first step Amazon will take in caring for the environment."



    Mike Allen

    "Amazons plans of renewing their power supply through renewable energy have finally taken flight. With more and more ISPs moving towards environmentally friendly practices, people were starting to wonder when Amazon would jump on the green energy bandwagon. Greenpeace, a leading organization focused on bettering the environment, has been pushing ...

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