Ever since we issued a challenge to Facebook to put out a plan by Earth Day showing how it will go coal-free, we have been working on creative ways to crack that nut.
Last week we caught up with Facebook employees on their way to work and spoke with them directly about their company’s reliance on coal. Unsure of what they already know about the issue, or how much they’ve gleaned online and from the media, our aim is to help them understand our "Unfriend Coal" campaign first-hand.
Bright and early Monday morning, a team of cheery Greenpeace volunteers delivered Valentine’s Day messages to our friends-to-be at Facebook. Stationed at each of Facebook’s shuttle stops and headquarter buildings, we handed out heart-shaped lollipops, which conveyed a simple message: Greenpeace hearts Facebook, but we need it to get off of coal.
The majority of Facebook’s employees work in two large, box-like buildings in the tech epicenter of California, the Silicon Valley. From the outside, these structures are immense, nondescript, and as monolithic as the data centers that house Facebook’s servers, which store info uploaded by over 600 million users.
We wanted to communicate directly to Facebook employees about their company’s use of coal to power those data centers, and the better energy choices available to them. See, we think that there’s a lot of common ground between us Greenpeacers and the Facebook crew. They’re smart, ambitious, and serious about changing and improving the way the world operates. They’re as dedicated to their work as we are to ours.
In fact, we believe that if more Facebook employees were aware that their company’s growth is going to increase the demand for dirty energy, they’d be the first to seek solutions to help green Facebook from within.
But we had to get creative in order speak with Facebook staff about why we’re looking for a commitment from their employer. The headquarters don’t exactly lend themselves to visitors!
We passed out more surprises throughout the week, and each delivery carried an invitation to employees to join us in supporting clean, renewable growth for Facebook. We kept it fun and friendly, as our aim was nothing more than to educate and engage the staff, many of whom would likely care as much as we do about choosing clean energy to power the social network if they only knew exactly what’s at stake.
We’re not the only ones who have a message for Facebook. Check out the video message above, recorded by Ed Begley Jr. and Rachelle Carson from the television series “Living With Ed”.
If you're a Facebook employee, and you want to leave an anonymous tip... just kidding... if you want to talk about the issue or find out what you can do, .