Google Cloud now helps customers pick the greenest data centers

Get a free Techzine subscription!

The move is part of the tech giant’s overall sustainability program.

Google this week announced an important – and interesting – update to its region picker service. The update aims to make it easier for customers to choose Google Cloud Regions with the lowest CO2 output.

Steren Giannini, product manager for Carbon-free for Google Cloud, detailed the new feature in a blog post. “Google first achieved carbon neutrality in 2007,” he writes. Google “has been purchasing enough solar and wind energy to match 100% of its global electricity consumption since 2017.”

“We want to empower you to make more sustainable decisions and progress with us towards this 24/7 carbon-free future.”

The new update supports Google’s overall sustainability goal, he adds. Namely, Google wants to operate its data centres using carbon-free energy (CFE) 24/7 in every region by 2030.

The latest step in a larger corporate commitment

“Earlier this year, we published the carbon characteristics of our Google Cloud regions,” he says. “Later, we introduced a simple tool to help you pick a Google Cloud region, taking variables like price, latency and sustainability into account. “

“Our next question was: what’s the best way to surface that sustainability info when you’re actually picking a region for your cloud resources?”

Starting this week, Google is now indicating regions with the lowest carbon impact inside Cloud Console location selectors. The feature is now available now for Cloud Run and Datastream. Customers will see it roll out to more Google Cloud offerings over time, he promised.

“Before releasing this feature, we ran experiments to measure its impact,” Giannini explains. “Users who were exposed to the enhanced region picker were 19% more likely to select a “low carbon” region for their Cloud Run service.” This, Giannini says, is “a significant lift.”

“These results show that by displaying carbon information in context of when you make the decision of picking a region, we are helping you make more sustainable decisions.”