Category Archives: Green

Google signs five deals for green powering its cloud services

Cloud service giant Google has announced five new deals to buy 781MW of renewable energy from suppliers in the US, Sweden and Chile, according to a report on Bloomberg.

The deals add up to the biggest-ever purchase of renewable energy ever by a company that is not a utility, according to Michael Terrell, Google’s principal of energy and global infrastructure.

Google will buy 200 megawatts of power from Oklahoma-based Renewable Energy Systems Americas’s Bluestem wind project. From the same US state another 200 megawatts will be contributed by Great Western wind project run by Electricite de France. In addition, Google will also power its cloud services with 225 megawatts of wind power from independent power producer Invenergy.

Google’s data centres and cloud services in South America could become carbon free when the 80 megawatts of solar power that it has ordered from Acciona Energia’s El Romero farm in Chile comes online.

In Scandinavia the cloud service provider has agreed to buy 76 megawatts of wind power from Eolus Vind’s Jenasen wind project to be built in Vasternorrland County, Sweden.

In July, Google committed to tripling its purchases of renewable energy by 2025. At the time, it had contracts to buy 1.1 GW of sustainably sourced power.

Google’s first ever green power deal was in 2010 when it agreed to buy power from a wind farm in Iowa. Last week, it announced plans to purchase buy 61 megawatts from a solar farm in North Carolina.

Take a Photo Tour of Facebook’s Amazing Cold Storage Datacenter

There’s a fascinating photo tour of Facebook’s Oregon data center on readwrite today.

Facebook (arguably) owns more data than God.

But how to store a cache of user data collected at the scale of omniscience? If you’re Facebook, just build another custom-crafted server storage locker roughly the size of the USS Abraham Lincoln on top of a breezy plateau in the Oregon high desert. The company’s new Prineville, Ore., data center employs an ultra-green ”cold storage” plan designed from the ground up to meet its unique—and uniquely huge—needs.

The piece also includes useful links on the tech behind the data center, shingled drive tech, and the Open Compute project that led to the innovations on display here.

Cloud Data Centers in Rural Locations — Gobbling Electricity, Throwing Their Weight Around

Very interesting in-depth article in the New York Times today on the sprawling, electricity-hungry data centers spawned by cloud computing.

Internet-based industries have honed a reputation for sleek, clean convenience based on the magic they deliver to screens everywhere. At the heart of every Internet enterprise are data centers, which have become more sprawling and ubiquitous as the amount of stored information explodes, sprouting in community after community.

the gee-whiz factor of such a prominent high-tech neighbor wore off quickly. First, a citizens group initiated a legal challenge over pollution from some of nearly 40 giant diesel generators that Microsoft’s facility — near an elementary school — is allowed to use for backup power.

Then came a showdown late last year between the utility and Microsoft, whose hardball tactics shocked some local officials.

These data centers are apparently not always good neighbors, and of course as they are there to serve our cloud needs we’re all complicity to some degree.

Report: Green Data Center Market $45 Billion by 2016

The combination of rising energy costs, increasing demand for computing power, environmental concerns, and economic pressure has made the green data center a focal point for the transformation of the IT industry as a whole. According to a recent report from Pike Research, a part of Navigant’s Energy Practice, the worldwide market for green data centers will grow from $17.1 billion in 2012 to $45.4 billion by 2016 – at a compound annual growth rate of nearly 28 percent.

“There is no single technology or design model that makes a data center green,” says research director Eric Woods. “In fact, the green data center is connected to the broader transformation that data centers are undergoing—a transformation that encompasses technical innovation, operational improvements, new design principles, changes to the relationship between IT and business, and changes in the data center supply chain.”

In particular, two powerful trends in IT are shaping the evolution of data centers, Woods adds: virtualization and cloud computing. Virtualization, the innovation with the greatest impact on the shape of the modern data center, is also recognized as one of the most effective steps toward improving energy efficiency in the data center. In itself, however, virtualization may not lead to reduced energy costs. To gain the maximum benefits from virtualization, other components of the data center infrastructure will need to be optimized to support more dynamic and higher-density computing environments. Cloud computing, meanwhile, has many efficiency advantages, but new metrics and new levels of transparency are required if its impact on the environment is to be adequately assessed, the report finds.

The report, “Green Data Centers”, explores global green data center trends with regional forecasts for market size and opportunities through 2016. The report examines the impacts of global economic and political factors on regional data center growth, along with newly adopted developments in power and cooling infrastructure, servers, storage, and data center infrastructure management software tools across the industry. The research study profiles key industry players and their strategies for expansion and technology adoption. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the Pike Research website.

PixPuffin Photo Management System for SMBs Runs Carbon-free on Iceland’s GreenCloud

NordicPhotos image agency has released PixPuffin, a cloud-based photo management system for medium sized and small businesses.  Web-based, without any need for additional software or servers, it is the first of its kind and specially designed to administer  the image library of today’s companies and organizations. The system has been in constant development for over 11 years as the core system overseeing NordicPhotos’ own image library. Based in Iceland, the system is cloud hosted on greenqloud’s 100% renewable energy servers, making PixPuffin the first completely eco-friendly image management solution available.

Between single user solutions and large, very expensive server based media management solutions, the creators of PixPuffin felt that user friendly and affordable image management solutions were somewhat lacking from the market.  Businesses and organizations can save a great amount of money every year by using a solution like PixPuffin, they can save time and prevent damages such as lost images and expensive copyright mistakes. Furthermore, they can improve or extend the use of their images, save on image purchase and make their marketing and PR presence better than ever.
For more information and

“We have talked to almost 200 companies during the past few weeks and it surprised us how much of a problem image management is becoming within companies of all kinds,” said Arnaldur Gauti Johnson, Managing Director.  “They are using more images than ever, but lacking systems to manage the images and the copyrights attached. Access to the images is also becoming increasingly important as many administrators in the company need to grant access to the media and clients as well as the employees and they must be able to control this access.”