Facebook didn’t exactly meet Greenpeace’s Earth Day challenge, which called for the social network giant to pledge to cut out coal as an energy source for its data centers by April 22. The day before Earth Day (and at our Green:Net event last week) Greenpeace’s unveiled its “Dirty Data” report, which gave Facebook three failing grades for its use of clean power: two D’s, and an F. But Facebook did respond in a letter to Greenpeace last week, in which the company said it would do more in the future for the carbon impact of the energy of its data centers.
Facebook says it has taken Greenpeace’s suggestion that Facebook share more information about its data centers seriously, and as a result, says it will be sharing more information — like estimated facility level PUE and WUE (water usage effectiveness) — this summer on “Facebook.com/green.” Facebook also says this year it will host three fellows from the Environmental Defense Fund’s Climate Corp Program.
In addition, Facebook says it will consider the “carbon impact,” among a list of criteria, for the location of any future data centers going forward. Lastly, Facebook says it will take Greenpeace up on its offer to provide Facebook with its expertise on energy sourcing for data centers.
Basically, Greenpeace got Facebook’s attention. Overall, not a huge win, but the Greenpeace Unfriend Facebook campaign had a significant effect.