Starting a business gives me the opportunity to think about everything from the hosting service to the website design to the accounting and blogging systems to the physical retail space.
One of my goals in starting up is to think about product and service choices in terms of energy consumption or affect on the environment. I don’t plan to change my lifestyle over night — I don’t think most people can or should do that. But by measuring and learning about energy consumption and our carbon footprint (the negative effect we have on the environment), we can choose to make noticeable improvements.
On the other hand, there are times when you do get to start new. The hot water tank needs to be replaced, for instance. Or you are building an addition to your house. These are great times to look into a solar-heated hot water tank or a solar panel to provide electricity.
One of the first things I purchased for this new business was a website hosting service. In two of my previous jobs I was responsible for the IT services of the company and I have walked through some impressive web hosting facilities. Racks and racks of electronic equipment that have to be kept at a very cool temperature. You walk into a place like that and can’t help but think about the electricity and air conditioning bills.
I was very happy to find there are quite a few hosting services whose power is supplied from renewable sources such as wind and solar – 100%. And many others that are offsetting their carbon emissions by paying into a system that funds renewable sources.
I also had a list of requirements for the kind of software that I want to be able to run, and of course, I would like to keep the monthly costs low.
After some searching, I found this site that summarizes a number of different green web hosting services: http://www.ecobusinesslinks.com/green_web_hosting.htm
I decided on “Sustainable Hosting” which is described as “an environmentally responsible hosting company that is powered by renewable wind energy”. I like their list of software applications, ease of use, and the cost is $10/mo. I am going to add their logo to the bottom of this website both to promote them and remind me (and others) that when there is a choice that is less expensive or similarly priced, we can choose to help save the planet.
Any green products or services that you have found lately?