Google Says It Will Run Entirely on Renewable Energy in 2017

“We are the largest corporate purchaser of renewable energy in the world,”

.. Unlike carbon-based power, Mr. Kava said, wind supply prices do not fluctuate, enabling Google to plan better.

.. YouTube and Gmail, each of which has over 1 billion customers. They run on a global network of 13 large-scale data centers, each one a complex of many buildings containing hundreds of thousands of computers.

.. The 5.7 terawatt-hours of electricity Google consumed in 2015 “is equal to the output of two 500 megawatt coal plants,”

.. That is enough for two 140,000-person towns.

.. “Every time you double production, you reduce the cost of solar by about 20 percent. Wind goes down 10 to 12 percent,”

.. Critics note that while Google might be adding wind and solar to the world’s power grid, overall it is still dependent on fossil fuels, since sun and wind power are intermittent, while demand for things like YouTube cat videos is continual.

“In my mind it’s a P.R. gimmick,” said Chris Warren, vice president of communications at the Institute for Energy Research, a think tank in Washington supported largely by donations from individuals and companies in the fossil fuel industry.

The Id That Ate the Planet

rapid technological progress in renewable energy is making nonsense — or maybe I should say, further nonsense — of another bad argument against climate action, the claim that nothing can be done about greenhouse gas emissions without crippling the economy. Solar and wind power are getting cheaper each year, and growing quickly even without much in the way of incentives to switch away from fossil fuels. Provide those incentives, and an energy revolution would be just around the corner.

.. There are some men — it’s almost always men — who become enraged at any suggestion that they must give up something they want for the common good. Often, the rage is disproportionate to the sacrifice: for example, prominent conservatives suggesting violence against government officials because they don’t like the performance of phosphate-free detergent. But polluter’s rage isn’t about rational thought.