updated 12:15 pm EDT, Wed April 18, 2012
Activists target Apple over
Four Greenpeace activists today organized a protest at Apple's office in Cork, Ireland, reports say. The people handed out leaflets, and posted signs on the side of the building, including ones that spelled out "Clean our cloud." Police and fire crews were called, and after an hour the activists voluntarily came down from the office's roof. Greenpeace is allegedly organizing related protests across Europe.
The effort is in support of a recent report criticizing Apple, Amazon and others for using "dirty" sources to power their datacenters. Apple has quickly fired back, arguing that Greenpeace got some facts wrong about the company's North Carolina facility. The building supposedly consumes five times less power than Greenpeace is saying, and may benefit much more from upcoming solar and fuel cell expansions than the 10 percent Greenpeace projects.
Apple is moreover claiming that its upcoming Oregon datacenter will run entirely on renewable energy. Datacenters as a rule can consume massive amounts of power, since they run servers processing terabytes or even petabytes of data on a 24/7 schedule. Google's servers, for instance, are known to manage dozens of petabytes each day.