Google Measures and Reduces Energy Use

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Energy reduction remains a focus for Google and a post on the Google Official Blog highlights the scope and scale of their own efforts and other initiatives impacting on domestic energy use. Google’s Vice President of Real Estate and Workplace Services, David Radcliffe, describes initiatives to maintain Google’s 2007 commitment to being carbon-neutral. Initiatives which include a recent clean energy agreement with NextEra Energy Resources to repower a wind farm at California’s Altamont Pass.

The new wind power turbines being installed as part of the NextEra agreement are larger, twice as efficient and safer for wildlife than the current smaller ones. They will pour 43 MW of electricity onto the grid starting in 2016. The 24 new turbines will replace 370 legacy turbines and generate the entire annual energy requirements of Google’s North Bayshore buildings in Mountain View.

Placing servers in environments, where cooling factors in natural climates, has helped make Google’s data centres 50% more efficient than the industry average. Green building technology has been very effective in limiting energy consumption in Google’s offices around the world.

Google’s acquisition of Nest Labs Inc. has the potential to provide data on household energy consumption. Data which can bring clean energy suppliers and consumers together to increase sustainability and cost efficiencies.