Facebook's New Coal-Powered Data Center

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Facebook's New Coal-Powered Data Center Facebook's New Coal-Powered Data Center
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Facebook's New Coal-Powered Data Center

by Siobhan O'Connor

February 19, 2010
Facebook
, which has officially become the second-biggest website in the U.S., just announced its plans to open an enormous data center in beautiful Oregon. Not beautiful is that it's apparently going to be coal-powered, which is why Change.org has mounted a petition to Mark Zuckerberg, asking him to consider renewable energy instead. The plant's going to be huge, and Facebook is huge, and the impact of this move-symbolically and actually-is not insignificant.For their part, Facebook has said its energy will not be exclusively coal-powered, and that its plans for the facility are world-class when it comes to responsible building. The facility, they say, will be LEED certified, and will use an evaporative cooling system etc.
…Our new data center will be receiving our power through PacifiCorp, which like most utilities has a diverse generation portfolio including hyrdo, geothermal, wind and coal…
That "everyone else does it, and so why can't we?" argument is pretty lazy, and considering the heat LEED's gotten, and the ugliness of coal, Facebook would be wise to go further and get this right. You know: Set the example, lead the charge.What do you think? Should Facebook change course now? Or are their other measures enough?Image via
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