Facebook has made a major commitment to renewable energy, pledging to work with Greenpeace to source more clean energy to power its giant datacentres.
The social networking giant announced Thursday that it will work closely with Greenpeace to enhance the energy efficiency of its IT infrastructure, switch from coal to renewable energy where possible, and promote clean energy to its millions of users.
The agreement represents a major victory for the green NGO, which has run a high profile two-year campaign dubbed Unfriend Coal designed to encourage Facebook to reduce its reliance on the coal-fired power stations it often uses to run its giant server farms.
Greenpeace said that as a result of the new agreement the campaign, which had secured support from 700,000 online activists, will end today.
"Greenpeace and Facebook will now work together to encourage major energy producers to move away from coal and instead invest in renewable energy," said Tzeporah Berman, co-director of Greenpeace's International Climate and Energy Program.
"This shift to clean, safe energy choices will help fight global warming and ensure a stronger economy and healthier communities."
Under the new partnership Facebook has committed to adopt a siting policy for new datacentres that gives preference to locations that can provide low carbon energy. It will also "engage in a dialogue" with energy suppliers to encourage them to increase the level of clean energy they provide to the company's datacentres.
The social giant also pledged to step up research into clean energy and energy efficient IT infrastructure, which it will then share with the industry through the Open Compute Project.
In return, Greenpeace said it would support Facebook's efforts to curb its greenhouse emissions, help promote the Open Compute Project, and work with the company to develop campaigns to encourage Facebook users to engage with clean energy.
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