Remember Clippy? You know, that little paper clip that always popped up at the most annoying times when you were trying to write something in older versions of Microsoft Word?

Well, Clippy’s back, and poised to pop up at Microsoft stores around the country with a message for his makers.

Greenpeace activists, one dressed as Clippy, the mascot infamous for irritating Microsoft Word users, visit the Microsoft store in Palo Alto, Calif., Oct. 25, 2012, to ask the company to use clean energy to power the cloud for its new Windows 8 software and Surface tablet that launches Friday, Oct. 26. Photos by Jakub Mosur/Greenpeace

Clippy’s advice: If Microsoft wants the new Windows 8 and Surface tablet to be modern, innovative products that appeal to young customers, they need to power their cloud with 21st-century clean energy.

Microsoft has great products that help us connect with our friends and have fun.  All of them – whether it’s the new Surface tablet, Windows 8, Skype, or an Xbox – connect to the Internet, or Microsoft’s “cloud.”

Connecting to the cloud is a great feature of Microsoft’s stuff. We love the Internet! But as the Internet grows, it needs more electricity, and unfortunately, Microsoft’s getting the electricity for its cloud from old, dirty sources. The massive data centers that store and compute the data for Microsoft’s cloud use a lot of electricity, and much of it comes from dirty, dangerous old sources like coal and nuclear power. Microsoft’s most recent data centre announcements show that is it continuing to build in locations such as Wyoming and Virginia in the United States that are attached to dirty energy. Despite over 250,000 messages to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Microsoft has yet to significantly invest in clean energy

Today’s release of Windows 8 and the Surface – both products that will be heavily integrated into the cloud – mean more and more electricity use by Microsoft. Microsoft’s launch today is a great opportunity for them to bring us the greenest tablet and software out there, but Microsoft can only do that if it embraces clean energy.

Other Internet companies are leading the way for Microsoft. Google has invested almost a billion dollars in renewable energy, and is buying energy from wind farms to power its data centers.

If you want Windows 8 and the Surface to be connected to clean energy, and you want Microsoft to be as green as Google (or greener!), make sure Microsoft gets the message, and tweet Clippy’s advice to @Microsoft. Using the link on the left, tweet this post, along with the message:  “Hi, I am Clippy, your office assistant. @microsoft, would you like help building a #cleancloud for #windows8?”

Or post a comment on one of the posts on Microsoft’s Facebook page asking Microsoft to move us toward a clean energy future like Google is doing.

Microsoft can be a clean energy leader, but only if they hear from you!