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Sweeping Away Our Environmental Footprint

Companies throughout the world – especially tech startups – are taking their ecological footprints seriously and making conscious efforts to reduce them. Algolia has followed suit by adopting some critical eco-friendly measures such as carbon offsetting/compensation, and choosing clean energy data centers. These are important steps towards protecting the environment. 

Achieving Carbon Neutrality

We’ll start with what we ourselves can do. Every tech company has the power to compensate for its carbon emissions by reducing the greenhouse gases their technology generates. One way to do this is by planting trees and restoring our forests, which in turn reduces greenhouse gases at the same rate as they are created. This compensation process cancels out – or offsets – carbon emissions, thus achieving carbon neutrality.

Carbon neutrality is essential to any eco-friendly policy. It’s a form of giving back. Data centers used by cloud companies emit 2% of all greenhouse gases in the world. 

With the help of a company specialized in ensuring carbon neutrality, Pachama, we’ve been able to assess our carbon footprint and take steps to sweep it away. 

Our ultimate intention is to help scale up the protection and restoration of the forests of the planet, which recapture carbon from the atmosphere, reversing climate change. 

– Pachama

We chose Pachama not only for its thorough approach to assessing carbon usage, but for its innovative technology: they use deep learning models and data-intensive algorithms to assess the exact carbon footprint of a company. But more significantly, these algorithms rely on satellites and drones to ensure that the data used is 100% reliable. 

We source high-definition, high-frequency satellite images to estimate carbon storage in forests and predict future deforestation or potential for forest restoration.

– Pachama

Thanks to Pachama’s careful analysis, we’re assured that our claim of carbon neutrality is real and accurate.

Using Clean Energy in Our Data Centers

While carbon neutrality is important, choosing energy that does not produce greenhouse gases in the first place is even better. The tech industry needs to find ways to reduce their reliance on fossil fuels and other forms of “dirty” energies. We can’t do this alone, as many of us do not own the data centers we use. Instead, we rely on the eco-friendly efforts by our data center providers. 

The trend for data center owners has been to switch to renewable energy, relying on such “clean” power as sunlight, wind, rain, tides, waves, and geothermal heat. The data centers that Algolia uses, located throughout the world, are making substantial progress in reducing their use of fossil fuels. Many of our most important centers have published their ecological footprint, such as Google, Microsoft Azure, and Amazon. The numbers are impressive: some are at 100% renewable energy. Clean energy is a trend that Algolia has jumped at to help sweep away its footprint.

Customers and Employees Are Asking Us to Give Back

Carbon neutrality and clean energy are just two ways for global businesses to give back. Prospects and customers are beginning to ask questions about these and other such efforts. Employees and potential employees are equally interested in our global care. They ask about how we give back to the community. Caring about the environment is only one way. There are others – financing open source, matching charity donations, setting up a $1000 referral program, signing a founder’s pledge. We feel that giving back through pro-ecological and community-based charity is a responsibility for all cloud companies.

We continue to look at other green initiatives – led by our employees as well as our client and partner ecosystem. Today, it is up to all members of the tech industry to be proactive in protecting the environment.

About the author
Peter Villani

Sr. Staff Writer


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