Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOGL) just made a huge step forward in terms of its renewable energy mission. Google’s Senior Vice President for Technical Infrastructure, Urs Hölzle, recently announced that Google’s total purchase of renewable energy exceeded the amount of electricity used by all of its operations around the world.
Over the course of 2017, across the globe, for every kilowatt-hour of electricity Google consumed, it purchased a kilowatt-hour of renewable energy from a wind or solar farm that was built specifically for Google. This makes it the first public company of its size to have achieved this feat.
According to Hölzle in a blog post:
We’ve been working toward this goal for a long time. At the outset of last year, we felt confident that 2017 was the year we’d meet it. Every year, we sign contracts for new renewable energy generation projects in markets where we have operations. From the time we sign a contract, it takes one to two years to build the wind farm or solar field before it begins producing energy. In 2016, our operational projects produced enough renewables to cover 57 percent of the energy we used from global utilities. That same year, we signed a record number of new contracts for wind and solar developments that were still under construction. Those projects began operating in 2017—and that additional output of renewable energy was enough to cover more than 100 percent of what we used during the whole year.
Keep in mind that Google is continually building new data centers and offices, and as demand for Google products grows, so does its electricity load. As such, the firm needs to be constantly adding renewables to its portfolio to keep up.
And in regions where Google can’t yet buy renewables, the firm will keep working on ways to help open the market.
We also think every energy buyer—individuals and businesses alike—should be able to choose clean energy. We’re working with groups like the Renewable Energy Buyers Alliance and Re-Source Platform to facilitate greater access to renewably-sourced energy.
Shares of Alphabet were last seen trading at $1,031.26, with a consensus analyst price target of $1,327.00 and a 52-week range of $817.02 to $1,186.89.