The ‘100% Sustainable Energy: Green ICT’ campaign initiated by Hivos targets data centres, appealing to these companies to consider the environmental footprint of the electricity they use. Hivos is keen for a debate on greener alternatives and wanted a review of the sustainability of the various options available for buying ‘green power’ on the commercial market in the Netherlands, with a reasoned discussion of each.
That review, laid down in this report, examines and discusses the various ‘green power products’ for the commercial market, providing a springboard for data centres to switch to a ‘greener’ product. To that end ‘green power products’ were categorized to highlight the differences between them. The highest score was given to renewable energy produced without any operating subsidy (the so-called SDE+ scheme), or with the higher price being paid for entirely by customers. Supply in these two categories is still fairly negligible, as this essentially represents an energy market in which renewables are cost-competitive with ‘grey’ electricity, or one in which customers are willing to pay (far) more for their electricity. The lowest scores were assigned to renewable power sourced in other countries and to ‘grey’ electricity.