- Microsoft president Brad Smith wrote that the company wants to cut its operational carbon emissions 75% by 2030, in a blog post last week.
- The company has an internal carbon fee or tax to "hold our business divisions financially responsible for reducing their carbon emissions," said Smith. Microsoft doubled the fee it pays to $15 per metric ton of all carbon emissions.
- The increased fee is meant to keep the company's carbon neutrality in check. Microsoft hit its first renewable energy goal, set in 2016, almost a year ahead of schedule. Before the end of 2019, 60% of Microsoft's data centers will be powered on renewable energy, according to Smith.
As cloud demands rise, big tech companies like Microsoft, Google and Amazon Web Services are attempting to shrink their carbon footprints with the use of non-traditional energy sources.
Earlier this month Amazon announced three international projects for sustaining AWS' global infrastructure. The additional wind turbine projects are set to deliver wind-generated energy, totaling 229 megawatts of power.
In 2018, AWS hit the 50% mark on renewable energy for its global infrastructure.
Google also has a 100% renewable energy goal and is the leader in corporate renewable energy purchasing in the world, according to the company. It matched its electricity consumption through "direct purchases of renewable energy" by 100%.
Microsoft is experimenting with making the ocean floor a hospitable environment for data centers.
Project Natick, Microsoft's submarine data center experiment, is a solution for the land-based data centers that demand energy and time.
Traditional data centers are sensitive to external disruptions, like climate change-induced catastrophes. The marine data center is powered by tidal energy.
While Natick can't run on other forms of energy, the tidal energy idea arose from wind farms, something Amazon Web Services is heavily invested in.