Environmental Conservation by Google
Several years ago, we visited Google for very singular reasons. You see, Google is a company that is mainly associated with technological innovations, and the internet. It is highly unlikely that you can hear the word ‘environment’ in the same sentence or even conversation with the word Google. The company features in conversations and discussions that are usually centered on its marvelous innovations.
People like to compare notes ion the latest search engine metrics, to revisit the rather sad but sentimental failure of Google Glass, and even to evaluate the feasibility of Google’s self-driving car. It is in this context that I describe our visit to the technology giant as rather singular because it had little to do with these world renowned technology marvels.
It had all to do with a little-known but also marvelous Google subsidiary called Google Energy.
A worthwhile trip
Google is an avid support of environmentally conservation activities and innovations. The company usually funds various pollution reduction activities and climate change initiatives through its philanthropic division. We were invited to Google after winning a competition sponsored by the company on impacting environmental initiatives by private groups.
Our group which comprises of several environmental professionals won the competition due to our cleanup activities which also emphasize beauty in addition to sanitation. We have conducted cleanup activities in many discarded facilities and I must say that our final facelift gains more publicity that the actual sanitization activity. Our group usually paints the cleaned facilities employing high quality paint and skills, which is the main trademark of our cleanup activities.
Additionally, we do not charge anything for these cleanups but accept donations. The company gave us a generous donation and then we were invited for a visit first to the company’s headquarters and later to its renewable energy endeavors.
The renewable energy lessons
The company created Google Energy to reduce costs of energy consumption in the entire Google Group, and subsequently to produce and sell clean energy. Google had invested a huge amount of resources in renewable energy projects covering wind, solar, solar-thermal, and geothermal projects.
Following its huge commitment in this field, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has even granted Google an authorization to buy and sell energy at market rates.
At the company’s headquarters, we were shown the company’s 1.6MW solar installation that is used to power the facility. The company is really committed to green energy and it has decided to lead by example. We were also given lessons on renewable energy and how studies have shown that it is a reality.
Incidentally, the company has liaised with researchers to calculate and predict how the world can realistically sustain its energy needs on renewable energy only without fossil fuels. According to the research, it is indeed possible to power the world in renewable energy alone.
We visited the company’s wind farms in North Dakota, and other renewable energy projects all of which was an eye opening experience. The most humbling aspect of the visit was that although the company is in a totally different line of work, Google is really committed to our cause. Talk about setting an example.