Greenpeace activists protest on Apple’s Cork HQ’s roof

18 Apr 2012

Four Greenpeace activists protested on the roof Apple’s European base in Cork this morning, saying the company’s new cloud service iCloud is powered by fossil fuels.

RTÉ reports that four activists staged an hour-long protest on the Apple building at Holyhill in Cork from 7am this morning.

Gardaí and the fire service arrived at the scene and the protesters came down voluntarily.

The protest centred around Greenpeace’s ‘How Clean Is Your Cloud?’ report, which rates technology companies such as Apple, Amazon, Google, Microsoft, HP and Twitter, on how much greenhouse gas emissions they are producing.

According to the report, Apple, Amazon and Microsoft’s cloud businesses were rapidly expanding without ‘adequate regard’ to how their energy is sourced. It claims the companies rely on fossil fuels to power their cloud services.

The report also claimed Apple’s new data centre in North Carolina in the US, which powers iCloud, mostly uses coal and estimates it would consume 100m watts at full capacity.

Apple denied these claims, telling the New York Times the data centre would consume 20m watts at full capacity. Apple also said it is building two large projects to offset energy use from the grid in North Carolina, which include an array of solar panels and a set of fuel cells.