DreamHost is carbon neutral.
We’ve calculated the impact of everything that DreamHost uses and leaves behind in the course of our daily work. All of the resources that we use – paper in the office, electricity for our servers, even the gas in our cars that bring us to the office – leaves behind some kind of soul-sucking residue in the world.
When we learned that running DreamHost generated as much carbon dioxide as 545 average-size homes we realized we had to do something to neutralize our emissions.
With a bit of research we found the most effective approach begins with resource conservation: turning off the lights, reducing travel, printing on both sides of the page. Efforts are being ramped up here daily to do what we do with less. The next step is to use clean, renewable energy. Without the option to put up solar panels or connect with a green power utility for us this means investing in renewable energy projects taking place right here in the United States through the purchase of carbon offsets. Finally, to neutralize those unavoidable emissions from our day-to-day operations (e.g. purchases of office products, commuting, and planned travel) we’ve invested in carbon offsets from international renewable energy and energy efficiency projects, effectively erasing our remaining greenhouse gas emissions.
A third-party-certification? Never fear. The carbon offsets we use to neutralize our energy consumption and operations meet the highest standards in the industry. Click to view our up-to-date Certificate of Carbon Neutralization.
U.S. Green Chamber of Commerce
We’ve joined the U.S. Green Chamber, participating in their “100 Cities for Change” program. Their goal is to facilitate and support sustainable business practices that spur innovation, job creation, energy efficiency and an overall brighter economic future.
In Our Own Backyard
Carbon offsetting alone will not solve the climate crisis and its practice does not excuse anyone from taking direct, onsite action to reduce emissions. We’re always looking for more ways to reduce our resource usage around the office and the data center. We use coffee cups made from fully renewable resources. In the last couple of years we’ve also been deploying many more servers with notoriously power-efficient AMD processors. As processor and server technology continues to evolve we’ll follow the path of power efficiency. It just makes sense!
Great Green Energy
To mitigate the impact of climate change we need to accelerate the transition to clean, renewable sources of energy right here in the United States. When a renewable energy plant goes online it generates both electricity and – due to the demand for emissions-free power – credits for the carbon emissions avoided by its operation. When buyers such as DreamHost invest in credits from renewable energy plants that wouldn’t be financially viable otherwise, the credits can be certified as carbon offsets. These carbon offsets are “decoupled” from the energy provided by utilities and sold to buyers interested in neutralizing carbon emissions. The purchase and permanent retirement of renewable energy-based carbon offsets account for the electricity we use to power our servers and offices and mean that every dollar spent hosting with us is an investment in a new low-carbon economy.
When a third-party validates that a project has avoided greenhouse gas emissions – either through the production of clean, renewable energy or through increased energy efficiency – a credit known as a carbon offset is generated that can be bought and sold on the open market. When an end user buys and permanently “retires” one of these credits (usually representing one metric ton of greenhouse gas reductions) an equivalent amount of that user’s carbon emissions are effectively neutralized. This, in a nutshell, is the practice of carbon offsetting – a practice that not only makes us feel good but encourages us to reduce emissions from our own facilities.
Putting a price on carbon output is just one way to help make the world a better place, but most agree it’s a critical one. It allows markets to emerge where developers of emissions reduction projects connect with buyers such as ourselves and combine to make real change happen on the ground. To ensure these efforts are effective in reducing measurable emission in our atmosphere, it is critical that an independent third party step in to verify emission reductions claims and certify carbon offsets.
The carbon offsets we purchase to green our power consumption are certified under the Verified Carbon Standard (www.v-c-s.org) while those associated with our non-electricity emissions are certified under the Gold Standard (www.goldstandard.org). The Verified Carbon Standard and the Gold Standard not only ensure the emission reductions we claim are verified on the ground, but that our investment contributes to sustainable and equitable economic development for the communities in which these projects are located.
We’ve purchased enough of carbon offsets – which are retired after purchase and not resellable – to account for our energy usage and operational impact. The proceeds of these purchases enable renewable energy and energy efficiency projects that would otherwise not take place in the course of business as usual. We are not currently able to actually power our servers with the wind or the sun, but this is the next best thing!
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