It was announced today that Picsearch is launching a 4 step program to guarantee a carbon free multimedia search. The search industry is a growing power consumer that needs to take responsibility. This is the first time that a search service company is making a commitment to be 100 percent carbon free. Picsearch encourages all colleagues in the search industry to contribute similar efforts.
Human activities have increased the concentration of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases to unprecedented levels. Unchecked, greenhouse gases will result in a rise of between 2-5 degrees in global mean temperatures within the upcoming 30-50 years (Stern Review November 2006).
The resulting temperature change will have devastating consequences to both people and wildlife. The risk of droughts, floods, storms and rising sea levels will increase. Over 200 million people could be permanently displaced. The detrimental impact of all these effects together is equal to a 5-20 percent reduction of the world GDP. (Stern Review November 2006)
“Scientific evidence clearly indicates that climate change is a serious and urgent issue. As part of the global community we can not afford to remain passive.”
Robert Risberg, Picsearch’s CEO, said that “Scientific evidence clearly indicates that climate change is a serious and urgent issue. As part of the global community we can not afford to remain passive. The costs for failing to deal with the climate challenge will affect every part of the society.”
Many everyday activities, like using your computer, produce greenhouse gases. Approximately 70 percent of all electricity in the US is generated from fossil fuels (Energy Information Administration 2006). Experts advise that we should conserve forests, plant more trees and decrease activities which produce greenhouse gases. In addition the price of carbon must be significantly increased so that consumption will be in line with the reality of ecological costs (Stern Review November 2006).
Picsearch takes four steps to fulfill its social responsibility towards energy consumption: (1) Picsearch plants 1000 new trees for every gigawatt-hour consumed; (2) Picsearch buys and holds in trust 2 acres of old growth forest for every gigawatt-hour consumed; (3) Picsearch only uses electricity that is carbon free and follows the highest standard of production; and (4) Picsearch buys carbon credits equivalent to all the energy that Picsearch consumes.
The electricity used by server computers alone has doubled between 2000 and 2005. This increase is linked to a number of new services becoming available on a widespread basis including: music downloads, video-on-demand and Internet telephony. Data centers for cooling, backing-up information, and networking equipment use close to 2 percent of all electricity in the US (Stanford University February 2007). This consumption rate is likely to continually increase when the number of users increases and people spend more time online.
The IT industry has seen a large decrease in price per performance during recent years, while performance per watt has remained roughly flat. It is likely that the cost of electricity running the servers today exceeds the hardware price tag. (Google September 2005)
Robert Risberg, Picsearch’s CEO, said that “Trying to use energy efficient computers is good, but not good enough. Picsearch believes that we need to increase the price of energy consumption so that the real environmental costs are included in the daily business activities. We call upon all colleagues in the search engine business to follow our example.”
Picsearch AB is a premium provider of image and multimedia search services. The services are market leading in relevancy and family friendliness. Picsearch powers several leading Internet sites as well as its own Internet properties. Picsearch was founded in 2000, is privately held and headquartered in Stockholm, Sweden. For more information please visit www.picsearch.com.
For more information please contact: Carl Särnstrand, Communications Manager at Picsearch Tel: +46 73 204 14 79 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Addendum to the press release: Description of Picsearch 4 step program
Picsearch takes four steps to fulfill its social responsibility in terms of energy consumption:
(1) Picsearch plants 1000 new trees for every gigawatt-hour consumed.
On a global scale, the current level of emissions from deforestation is significant. The annual emissions from deforestation alone count for 18 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. In contrast, the preservation of tropical forest is equal to 500-750 tons of CO2 per acre (Stern Review November 2006). Picsearch has bought and planted trees in Malawi using Earth Restoration Service www.earthrestorationservice.org.
(2) Picsearch buys and holds in trust 2 acres of old growth forest for every gigawatt-hour consumed.
40 percent of the increase of carbon dioxide since 1850 is due to deforestation. One acre of planted forest will remove about 367 tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere over a period of approximately 50 years (BBC Wildlife January 2007). Picsearch has bought and held in trust old growth forests in Sweden using A Click for the Forest Foundation www.ettklickforskogen.se/engelska/ettKlickeng.asp.
(3) Picsearch only uses electricity that is carbon free and follows the highest standard of production.
Picsearch requires all electricity used by its computers, whether office or co-location datacenters, is produced without causing any green-house gases. The production of our vendor~s electricity is certified according to the highest standard of Swedish Society for Nature Conservation www.snf.se/english.cfm.
(4) Picsearch buys carbon credits equivalent to all energy that Picsearch consumes.
Picsearch has used the calculation tool from World Business Council for Sustainable Development available on www.snf.se/english.cfm.
Sources from the press release:
Stern Review November 2006 www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/independent_eviews/stern_review_economics_climate_change/sternreview_index.cfm
Energy Information Administration 2006 www.eia.doe.gov/fuelelectric.html
Stanford University February 2007 enterprise.amd.com/Downloads/svrpwrusecompletefinal.pdf
Google September 2005 acmqueue.com/modules.php?name=Content&pa=showpage&pid=330