How Green is Google?


A quick look through TreeHugger’s archives will yield numerous stories about Google’s efforts to address sustainability. The company's impressive array of environmental initiatives, including a recent plan for a massive solar installation at is campus, would lead most readers to believe that Google is emerging as model of sustainability. However, an article in Tuesday’s New York Times may present a different view of how much Google’s founders truly value environmental sustainability. The article is about a growing trend among the ultra rich to purchase jumbo jets for private use. Although the article focuses on the growing market for customized private 757, 767, and 777 jets, it happens to mention that Goolge founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, are among those who partake in this entirely unsustainable indulgence. The two internet billionaires purchased a used 767, and spent millions to convert it into a private jet. To provide some context, a 767 burns roughly 7,000 gallons of jet fuel on a trip between New York and San Francisco. In general, its difficult to determine the company’s motivation for its sustainability initiatives, but this certainly suggests that Google may be more interested in public relations than becoming a true model of sustainability.