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Google is supposed to be climate neutral already – but there is a catch

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According to its own statements, Google has offset all climate impacts since the creation of the company and will therefore work more or less negatively in CO2 in the future. However, the effective public relations message always has a catch.

The group started investing in renewable energies and more economical technologies a long time ago. The result of this was that in 2007 it was already possible to declare that it was CO2 neutral during operation. Now we also have to reach the point where the company has done so much more that all the climate impacts of the previous years until the company was founded in the 1990s have been offset.

However, Google can’t get away with it completely without criticism. Because the company has in no way carried out the balance sheet because all the commercial activity has been restructured. On the contrary, some of the positive aspects arise from the fact that, among other things, farms have been given systems to collect and de-activate methane from livestock. But also the waste management companies have been equipped with appropriate systems, as a report from the BBC shows. These should actually make their own contribution to climate protection, but that’s how Google was able to claim these savings.

Really neutral only in 2030

But it’s not just the emissions deal that’s the problem here. In addition, efforts have focused here on methane. This gas is about ten times more harmful to the climate than CO2, but it breaks down very quickly. The methane that enters the atmosphere today has practically disappeared in ten years, while the CO2 emitted can accumulate over millennia. In this regard, methane reduction is only suitable to a limited extent to offset CO2 emissions.

Google boss Sundar Pichai was prepared for such objections and said the company’s efforts by no means ended. The goal is still for the entire energy supply to be carbon neutral by 2030. This is the time frame that Apple and Microsoft are also looking for.

In order to achieve the goal, several factors must come together. For example, Google invests in power plants that run on regenerative energy sources in all locations around the world. In addition, we want to equip data centers with large battery buffers, which intervene when the pure supply of wind and sun is temporarily not working. In addition, AI systems are being developed that predict electricity needs and allow certain calculations to be performed in data centers, for example, in case of free power capacity.

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I am Robert C. James. A student of MSc in Computing (Applied) from Technological University Dublin (Dublin). I am a Computer Research Technologist, a Journalist and a Writer. I am mainly a Blogger Vlogger and a Creative Writer of all fields.

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