Greenpeace activists set up two giant “pinboards” outside of the Pinterest headquarters to ask the company to commit to 100% renewable energy for its data centers.
Influential users and designers on Pinterest submitted several of the designs with the message “Make Our Pins Green” which Greenpeace will continue to collect on their #ClickClean Pinterest board. The activity featured pins designed by eight Pinterest users with nearly five million followers combined.
“As a mom of three boys who are very technology savvy, paired with my role in social media with Pinterest an integral part of what I use every day, it would great to be positively part of helping Pinterest’s platform go green,” said Paula Coop McCrory, one of the Pinterest users with more than 4 million followers who submitted a design for the activity. “Being environmentally friendly is important to me and my family. I’d love to be able to say that Pinterest is now going green, too.”
Activists also set up a solar-powered café outside the headquarters in a small trailer, painted with a green Pinterest logo and topped with functioning solar panels. They offered Pinterest employees cupcakes, also iced with a green pinterest logo, and coffee, kept warm by burners drawing electricity from the solar panels.
— Greenpeace USA (@greenpeaceusa) May 6, 2014
Pinterest is growing fast, with an estimated 70 million users who have created 750 million boards and 30 billion pins. That data growth requires increasing amount of electricity to power it, and Pinterest has yet to make a commitment to power its growing energy footprint with renewable energy, or to share details about the size of its energy footprint. Apple, Facebook and Google have each committed to powering their Internet operations with 100 percent renewable energy, according to a report Greenpeace’s Clicking Clean report. Other fast-growing Internet companies like Box and Salesforce have also committed to 100 percent renewable energy.
Pinterest uses Amazon Web Services to power the data behind its platform. Amazon Web Services’ data centers are powered by only 15 % renewable energy – the rest of its electricity comes from coal, gas and nuclear power, according to the report.
Other companies using Amazon Web Services include Netflix, Spotify, Vine, Yelp, AirBnB and Reddit.
Greenpeace is pushing all major Internet companies to go green, with a focus on social media in its #clickclean campaign. Last month, Greenpeace activists unveiled a new green bird logo for Twitter outside the company’s San Francisco headquarters, and urged the company to commit to 100 percent renewable energy.