back to article German web host to go carbon neutral

Web hosting firm Strato has pulled on its hemp-woven strides and made an ambitious proclamation that it will be completely carbon-free by January 2008. The German-based company's CEO Damien Schmidt told The Register that while people may be more aware of reducing their individual carbon footprint, it was also important for tech …

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Diesel fuel

I hope they know that modern low-sulfur diesel fuel has only a six-month useable life, so they have to rotate it through an engine or throw it out. Hardly Green!

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Anonymous Coward

hmmm

how much energy did it take to build the dam? and how much did it cost to build?

Another thing we should remember is money equals energy hippies and feel good merchants like to forget this.

Money is the sum of being able to get to work, the time you spend at work, the things you use at work, the machines that got the things you work on to work etc etc etc.

I suppose their product is more expensive, so you need to work more to be able to afford it, so infact you must produce more of this boogy-carbon to get the hosting...

*yawns* anyway green hippies can enjoy their expensive energy and their expensive envirotard products while I enjoy my reasonably priced products safe in the knowledge that although maybe more boogey carbon was used to create them less boogey carbon was used to afford them.

And just to really upset the envirotards

this year I went by plane to California for 4 days, Germany 3 days and Japan 3 days. HAHAHA all the flights were nice and cheap, and even if they hadn't been I'd still have gone there.

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bit more than six month...

All you have to do is remix (stir) the fuel regularly to avoid the parrafine condensating on it's own, and add a bit of specific disinfectant to stop a few specific germs and fungus to develop and ruin your fuel...also some more chemicals to avoid having water condensating in the tank.

Also, we run the generators regularly to test them, and top off the fuel vat afterward, so you never have "6 month old fuel"

(I happen to work in a datacenter with six 4500HP Marine Diesels kept in a warm state and enough underground stored diesel to fire a pound a bacon to the moon/provide us power for two weeks.)

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Publicity 1, Environment 0

Using 100% renewable energy won't make them carbon neutral. What about the CO2 emitted in the production and delivery of their replacement hardware and other supplies, and staff travel etc?

In any case, presumably the renewable supply is currently in operation; in which case adopting a supply contract that guarantees their electricity is 100% renewable just means that other electricity users are getting less renewable energy from this particular source, and more non-renewable energy from conventional sources.

This charade arises with many so-called "green tariffs" in the UK. In the majority of cases they are merely a virtual accounting exercise with no real benefit. As far as I am aware, Ecotricity is just about the only supplier of "green" electricity in the UK who actually invests their profits in creating more renewable sources, rather than just exploiting peoples guilt to profit from a minor reorganisation of deck-chairs.

I don't mean to pour cold water on well-meant attempts to address environmental concerns, but we won't get anywhere in tackling climate change without some informed analysis of the real significance of any given action on overall emissions of carbon. In this case, I don't see any evidence that there will be a net reduction in overall carbon emissions.

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@hmmm

You might like to know that the price of energy from renewable sources is now very close to (and often below) the spot-market price on the energy exchange. This is why Germany, despite it's high population density and considerable industrial base, is now using more than 10% energy from renewable sources.

Renewable energy, particularly solar, benefits from tax breaks but so does heating oil and nuclear energy and the amount of money that has been sunk into nuclear energy is simply staggering and the price of uranium has gone up 500% in the last five years. However, because the price for fossil fuels does not look like it will be falling, more and more established energy companies are investing in renwable energy, cf. Areva's (a French energy supplier) attempts to buy Repower and Multibrid. Europe has no choice but to develop alternative energy sources and improve enegry efficiency and first movers will benefit increasingly as the prices of non-renewable energy continue to rise.

Your invective unfortunately detracts from your underlying and correct assessment: our lifestyles are increasingly energy intensive. Furthermore: it is also incorrect as Strato is the cheapest host in Germany. This is indeed true: we have more gadgets, we travel more, we live more extravagantly. But this only clarifies the underlying motive for switching to alternative sources of energy rather than invalidates it. While fear and ignorance about climate change are contributing to the debate and making it attractive to be seen to be green (the irony is that Europe is not likely to be as heavily affected by climate change as other parts of the world including the US), the main reasons for more energy efficiency are economic. In some markets such as air travel any gains in efficiency are more than offset by the increase in demand. And we probably wouldn't need any power stations if we went back to using abacuses and leafing through the Decameron, the Kama Sutra and the Song of Solomon!

Probably worth noting that the data centre based in Karlsruhe is close to Europe's largest one which is owned by Schlund aka 1&1. Proximity to a competitor is another reason to look for an independent source of power.

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Human nature 1, Backup generator 0

Backup generators are fine, until it comes to the crunch and you discover that the 'security' guards have been quietly selling the diesel... Terrible thing, human nature. Oh, yes...

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Other people doing this:

"Smartbunker", the data centre in a former nuclear bunker in Lincolnshire, also advertises itself as carbon-neutral. (smartbunker.com)

There are also some U.S. solar-powered data centres, e.g. aiso.com.

My view on this: most people doing co-location massively over-spec their hardware "just in case", and end up using 4 or 10 times more power than they need to.

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Take a deep breath???

Sooo, These morons in the process of their working dat are not even goin to breathe out?

Sounds like Bollocks to me!!

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Anonymous Coward

i love the all the nay saying

every conversation about renewable energy or the environment goes like this:

story: someone did something to help the environment or help progress renewable energy

person 1: ha! did they use renewable energy to create renewable energy? if not then whatever they did was bullshit!

person 2: ha! what about the rest of the world? it's all still the same still so whatever they did was bullshit!

person 3: ha! what about the government? until they change whatever they did was bullshit!

person 4: ha! how much did it cost? if it's not free then whatever they did was bullshit!

renewable energy may not help global warming, but it certainly wont hurt either. it is ALWAYS cheaper to prevent pollution than it is to fix the effects later.

people and companies are making changes, even if it's just something small, and that should always be commended. making progress means making changes.

real change doesn't happen without making real changes.

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Re: how much energy did it take to build the dam? and how much did it cost to build?

"how much energy did it take to build the dam? and how much did it cost to build?"

How much does your average nuclear reactor and the storage of its waste cost? And how much doest it cost if it goes boom?

"*yawns* anyway green hippies can enjoy their expensive energy and their expensive envirotard products while I enjoy my reasonably priced products safe in the knowledge that although maybe more boogey carbon was used to create them less boogey carbon was used to afford them."

If in the price of the energy you use the costs to remedy its side effects would be accounted for, you would build your own dam yesterday.

"And just to really upset the envirotards

this year I went by plane to California for 4 days, Germany 3 days and Japan 3 days. HAHAHA all the flights were nice and cheap, and even if they hadn't been I'd still have gone there."

Too bad none of your flights took you to New Orleans.

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Anonymous Coward

Pair Networks

Sounds to me like they're copying Pair Networks, a major US host with an outstanding reputation (Yes I am a customer, no I don't own shares in them)

http://www.pair.com/news/

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Anonymous Coward

Solar Powered Web Hosting Is The Only Way To Go

What about having your web site powered by solar....AISO.Net (http://www.aiso.net) is 100% solar powered, both their servers and data center are powered by on-site solar panels not renewable energy credits like everyone else. And they also have a partnership with Co-Op America, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the U.S. Green Building Council. Plus, they are doing more then just making sure their electricity is green. Their data center and office is green too by using environmentally friendly air conditioners, solar tubes to bring in natural light, a propane powered generator instead of diesel, VMWare virtualization to reduce their server electricity usage, 6 watt energy saving desktop computers for their employees, and soon to be LEED certified as a green data center, the only public one in North America. Plus AISO has been featured in Inc. Magazines’ Top 50 Green Companies along with the Wall Street Journal, Wired Magazine, ComputerWorld and Entrepreneur Magazine just to name a few, and they host www.liveearth.org

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