Akamai’s Intelligent Edge Platform™ interconnects everything and everyone, from the enterprise to the cloud, so customers and their businesses can be fast, smart, and secure. And now also green and clean

Akamai Sustainability Commitment 2020

Today, it’s not enough for the Internet to be fast, reliable, and secure. Our customers also want it green and clean. That’s why we’ve committed to powering our global network operations — including our outsourced data centers — with 50% renewable energy by 2020.

Our intelligent edge platform's hundreds of thousands of servers hum away in more than 140 countries, and thousands of locations, making up 90% of our Scope 2 and Scope 3 electricity-related greenhouse gas emissions (GHG). To date, we’ve been very successful in decoupling our business growth from energy use and carbon emission impacts through efficiency and productivity gains but we will always consume energy, and our carbon remains tightly coupled with energy. Decarbonizing this energy is a critical step along our journey to mitigate our environmental impacts and help our customers achieve their own decarbonization goals. To ensure that our impact is broad, these targets apply to both our worldwide direct and supplier colocation data center operations' Scope 2 and Scope 3 emissions.

DECOUPLING BUSINESS GROWTH FROM CARBON AND ENERGY IMPACTS

Akamai Sustainability Decoupling Business Growth from Impacts

Our Renewable Energy Procurement Principles

There are many ways to procure renewable energy, but as a business we wanted to ensure our investment would make a difference. After discussing the pros and cons of various energy procurement options with our - customers, investors, and NGO stakeholders, we established a set of guiding principles:

  1. Our investment should make a positive impact, helping to put more renewable energy electrons on the grid.
  2. The renewable energy generation should be colocated in the same power market as our operations, so we are adding renewable electrons to the same grid from which our operations draw electrons.
  3. Our procurement strategy should align with our customers' expectations, truly augmenting their supply chain sustainability efforts.

Even as our business is predicted to grow exponentially, we estimate that attaining our renewable energy goal will reduce our business-as-usual GHG emissions by 35-40% and our absolute emissions below 2015 levels.

Progress to Date

To date, Akamai has signed three virtual power purchase agreements in the U.S. Our share of the expected generation of the solar and wind farms is projected to represent 23% and 44% of Akamai’s global and U.S. network energy consumption in 2020, respectively. Two of the projects were a corporate-buyer aggregation collaboration with Apple, Etsy, and Swiss Re that can serve as a model to help other companies with smaller loads looking to procure renewable energy. We are also exploring renewable energy opportunities in Europe to cover our extensive data center operations there.

The graphic below shows the timeline of our plan and progress to date. More details about these renewable energy projects, plans to reach 50%, and progress are here.

Our Progress

Magnifying Results

It is our hope that our procurement strategy can be a model for other companies with similar small-scale, highly distributed and outsourced operations. Toward this end, we are active in several industry collaborations as members of RMI’s Business Renewables Center, the Renewable Energy Buyers’ Alliance (REBA), and BSR’s Future of Internet Power (FoIP) working group.

Through these organizations we are sharing our experiences and lessons learned, lowering the learning curve for others. Through FoIP, we are encouraging our colocation data centers providers to procure renewable energy for their facilities, and creating resources to enable these suppliers to develop renewable energy offerings for their clients as a differentiator.

For more details about our renewable energy and carbon reduction goals, please check out our blog.