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Greenpeace urges Facebook to go green

The environmental organisation wants Facebook to make the switch to renewable energy.

An online campaign by environmental organisation Greenpeace has been pressurising social networking site Facebook into switching to renewable energy.

Over 500,000 people have protested against the popular website's decision to power its new data centre in Portland, Oregon, on coal-based energy from Pacific Power.

The startup had announced plans for the world's largest centralised data storage centre in February. It said that 67 per cent of the energy for the centre would be sourced from Pacific Power, while 12 per cent would come from renewable sources.

Greenpeace began a Facebook campaign soon afterwards. The organisation's executive director, Kumi Naidoo, has urged chief executive Mark Zuckerberg to use 100 per cent renewable energy sources for the website's operations.

"Facebook is uniquely positioned to be a truly visible and influential leader to drive the deployment of clean energy," Naidoo said in a letter.

Facebook said that Greenpeace was simplifying the issue, and that locating the data centre in places where renewable power was available would require the company to install energy consuming mechanical chillers.