A sustainability moonshot
In 2022 – for the sixth consecutive year – Google matched 100 percent of its global annual electricity consumption with purchases of renewable energy.
However, because of differences in the availability of renewable energy sources like solar and wind across the regions where we operate—and because of the variable supply of these resources—we still need to rely on carbon-emitting energy sources that power local grids.
That’s why, in 2020, we set a goal to run on 24/7 carbon-free energy (CFE) on every grid where we operate by 2030, aiming to procure clean energy to meet our electricity needs, every hour of every day, within every grid where we operate. Achieving this will also increase the impact of our clean energy procurement on the decarbonization of the grids that serve us.
Achieving 24/7 CFE is far more complex and technically challenging than annually matching our energy use with renewable energy purchases. No company of our size has achieved 24/7 CFE before, and there’s no playbook for making it happen. But we see our efforts as part of a bigger picture, and we’ve set this ambitious goal to help scale new, global solutions. We’re excited to see others—like the U.S. federal government—set similar goals as well.
Our 24/7 CFE efforts are designed to maximize our contribution to the decarbonization of power grids worldwide. That’s why we’re supporting others to join us on the journey to 24/7 CFE, by sharing insights and lessons we’re learning and new approaches we’re developing. One such example is the United Nations 24/7 Carbon-Free Energy Compact, which we helped launch with Sustainable Energy for All and other partners in 2021.
A smarter way to buy clean energy
Accelerating clean energy growth on the electrical grid is urgent if we want to help keep the planet under 1.5°C of warming. A big issue holding this growth back is the length of time it takes to complete a clean energy deal. That’s why Google partnered to develop a smarter and faster approach to closing these deals. Dive into how it works, and take a behind-the-scenes look at our process for developing what we believe will become a new standard.
Google’s 2023 Environmental Report
Learn how we’re driving environmental benefits throughout our business in three key ways: developing products and technology that empower individuals on their journey to a more sustainable life; working together with partners and organizations everywhere to transition to resilient, carbon-free systems; and operating our business more sustainably. Our annual report is a chance for us to reflect on these benefits, the lessons we’ve learned along the way, and the opportunities and challenges we see ahead.
The internet is 24/7 – carbon-free energy should be too
Sustainability has been a core value for us since Google was founded two decades ago. We were the first major company to become carbon neutral for our operations in 2007. We were the first major company to match our energy use with 100% renewable energy in 2017. We operate the cleanest global cloud in the industry. Over the past decade, Google purchased more renewable energy than any other company, based on our cumulative renewable electricity purchased in megawatt-hours from 2012 to 2021. In our third decade of climate action, we are going even further to help build a carbon-free future for everyone.