Wow! Almost half a million Facebook users have asked Facebook to use 100% renewable energy to power their profiles. The Facebook page that was created to communicate this message directly to the company on the platform it knows best — it’s own — has drawn supporters from 124 countries in just six months. We are shy of 500,000 voices by only 5,000! Can you help us meet the mark?

Join in now. Help Facebook get off coal. Recruit a friend. Win a cool CD.

Facebook has not responded to the concerns of its members (what bad customer service!), neither with a direct reply, nor by making a bold public commitment to power its data centers with clean energy instead of coal.

So, it’s time to take the message to the top.

Greenpeace is going to send a letter to Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook, as soon as we are half-a-million strong. On behalf of all Facebook users who join the group, we will ask Mr. Zuckerberg to demonstrate real climate leadership by making sure that his company’s growth does not increase demand for dirty coal-powered electricity.

Just a few weeks ago, Facebook announced plans to double the size of its data center in Prineville, Oregon, which will run off of a primarily coal-powered grid. Facebook chose the wrong path by ignoring an opportunity to set an example of climate leadership for the rest of the IT sector, which is growing at a rapid rate, along with its carbon footprint.
The following is a sneak peak of part of the appeal that we intend to make to Mr. Zuckerberg:

“Facebook, which now connects over 500 million people, has a responsibility to exhibit good corporate citizenship toward the growing public it serves. No global business leader, particularly not one who reaches so many people daily, could deny that in this time it is both a threat to a company’s reputation and financial health risk to ignore his or her company’s environmental impacts.”

The letter goes on to address the example of the Prineville data center, and reminds Mr. Zuckerberg of the better efforts of his peers:

“Other cloud-based companies face similar same choices and challenges as you do in building data centers, yet many are making smarter and cleaner investments. Google, for instance, entered into a long-term agreement with a large wind power producer earlier this month. It has demonstrated that it is not only possible to prioritize the purchase of clean energy, but prudent as well.”

Greenpeace has nothing against Facebook, just its energy choices:

“Greenpeace regularly uses Facebook to engage its supporters in their friends to hold other corporations accountable for their environmental impact. Facebook’s innovative and easy-to-use platform has enabled it to become an incredibly important tool for connecting people to engage in driving social change. Facebook is uniquely positioned to be a truly visible and influential leader to drive the deployment of clean energy.”

We have ended the letter by reiterating the same message that nearly half a million Facebook users have sent to the company already: Facebook needs to commit to a specific plan to phase coal out of the electricity mix that powers its data centers, and proactively aid in the deployment of renewable energy to support the growth of cloud-based computing.

Facebook’s reliance on coal to power our profiles inhibits our ability, as Facebook users, to mitigate our own greenhouse gas impacts. We’re not likely going to stop using cloud-based applications to work and communicate any time soon, nor should we feel that we have to. But we do need to be promised by the cloud services we use, or better yet, we need to demand, that companies like Facebook commit to a green cloud, not brown.

Join “We want Facebook to use 100% renewable energy” right now to push the number of voices demanding that Facebook shows climate leadership over the half-million mark!