Last week, the tech and business media were all a-twitter about Facebook, after news that company will start constructing its first datacentre outside the United States, close to the Arctic Circle, in Luleå, Sweden.
The centre will use the frigid local climate as a green cooling option, and also make use of the hydropower in the region.
This is big news for our international Unfriend Coal Campaign: over the past 20 months 700,000 of us have campaigned online and around the world for a greener Facebook.
One of the big reasons for putting pressure on Facebook was that the company chose to power its first two self-owned datacentres primarily with coal. So it was a big sign of progress when news reached us that Facebook's spokesperson Michael Kirkland was quoted saying that the Luleå datacentre: "will be the first Facebook datacentre powered primarily by renewable power... it's a really important consideration for us".
There are lots of possibilities for Facebook to ensure it is increasing demand for renewable power with this new datacentre.
We often get asked, especially by people new to the Unfriend Coal campaign, why getting Facebook to go renewable is such an important issue. We've found that most people don't realise how much electricity is needed to power our internet-connected lives.
A lot of digital life now exists online on "the cloud", whether its email, streaming video, or our Facebook status updates. The cloud is run, in part, by these massive data centres and these huge facilities are amongst the fastest growing sources of electricity demand. In fact, if the cloud was a country, it would be the fifth largest in the world in terms of electricity use.
When Greenpeace released our "How Dirty is Your Data?" report earlier this year, people were shocked to see companies like Facebook and Apple powering the majority of their online services through coal.
And with each of Facebook's US data centers estimated to use the same amount of electricity as roughly 30,000 US homes, this is a lot of new coal pollution that it comes right at time when we need to be reducing, not increasing, our fossil fuel use.
African Facebookers make up at least 5.6% of the global population of the social network, so just because the datacentres are built in the US, it doesn't make us free of responsibility when it comes to greening our social networks.
This news is a great step forward for Facebook. We want to congratulate them on their progress -- and congratulate all of you who have been part of this campaign.
Keep up to date with Facebook's progress on greening their centres by joining our Unfriend Coal campaign on the social network.