Cloudflare targets creation of new blueprint for a zero emissions internet

Matthew Prince, co-founder and CEO of Cloudflare

Cloudflare, Inc., the security, performance, and reliability company helping to build a better Internet announced it will help power an Internet with zero carbon emissions.

The world’s largest and most interconnected networks will operate on 100% renewable energy. Cloudflare will also remove all historical carbon its global network has emitted.

What inspired Cloudflare to create the blueprint?

The Internet is responsible for approximately 1 billion tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year, comparable to the annual emissions of the entire aviation industry worldwide.

Internet property on Cloudflare’s network which consists of 17% of the web will automatically reduce emissions and seamlessly contribute to a greener, more sustainable world.

Cloudflare is also releasing sustainable edge computing services and energy efficient features to help build sustainability into their own applications, websites, and networks.

Now businesses can choose to intelligently route traffic through data centres powered by renewable energy using Green Compute on Cloudflare Workers.

Customers can understand and quantify their individual footprints and approximate savings from Cloudflare’s network compared to Internet averages with the Carbon Impact Report.

Organisations that deploy Cloudflare Pages will operate on renewable energy and receive a green certification from The Green Web Foundation displayed through a verified badge.

“Internet usage has skyrocketed in the last couple of years, growing over 80% on our network, and is showing no signs of slowing down.”

“For every search you do, online order you make, and video call you join, there is an environmental impact from the physical data centres, servers, and other physical infrastructure the Internet relies on,” said Matthew Prince, co-founder and CEO of Cloudflare.

“We want to give the Internet a clean slate to build a future where it’s easy to create, build, and run applications on green energy while remaining secure, fast, and reliable.”

As Internet usage continues to rise, so does the energy required for online services.

The electricity used to power the Internet’s infrastructure helps move content that sits in faraway servers, passes it through networks, and allows for it to land on a user’s device.

Turning to cloud platforms to deliver a service is more environmentally efficient than paper printouts. Each Internet-powered property has a climate impact that can be mitigated.

Organisations need the insights, tools, and control to lower their carbon emissions without sacrificing security, speed, or reliability of their applications and corporate networks.

Cloudflare’s seamless environmentally efficient solutions

Power compute with renewable energy 

Cloudflare’s distributed network drives a better climate outcome. Businesses and developers can elect to route a portion of their compute workloads through facilities on Cloudflare’s edge powered by 100% renewable energy with Green Compute on Cloudflare Workers.

Quantify their footprint and carbon savings from Cloudflare’s network

Cloudflare customers can effortlessly track and view their approximate carbon savings from their usage of Cloudflare services in comparison to Internet averages for the same volumes.

With the Carbon Impact Report, all customers can view customised data on their individual footprints on Cloudflare’s network to quantify, report on, and set sustainability goals, as well as view recommendations on actions they can take to reduce their carbon impact.

Receive green certification on their websites by default

All websites are automatically powered by 100 percent renewable energy with Cloudflare Pages, now in partnership with The Green Web Foundation. Organisations and developers default to deploy certified green web pages and can elect to display a verified badge.

Reduce unnecessary energy from search engines indexing the web 

Search engines will be notified by Cloudflare when content on a page has changed, to eliminate unnecessary crawls and energy. This will be available in future for all Cloudflare clients, to help deliver fresher indexes while wasting fewer resources from search engines.

Efficiency has been at the core of Cloudflare’s network from its founding.

In contrast to legacy models that transport certain activity to specific data centres halfway across the world, each Cloudflare data centre delivers full functions of security, performance, and reliability to intelligently serve users based on location.

The coupling of comprehensive services and Cloudflare’s network edge—spanning more than 200 cities operating within milliseconds of the Internet-connected population—simultaneously reduces energy to transport while providing optimal speed and security.

Cloudflare iterates on the optimal efficiency of its network and has achieved more than 50% improvement in requests per watt by deploying Arm® Neoverse processors in its edge servers.

The company is furthering its efficiencies with renewable energy-powered edge computing and services for its customers to build and scale sustainability.

Stakeholders’ comments on Cloudflare’s blueprint

“The industry has an opportunity to accommodate the increasing demand on cloud computing in a sustainable way,” said Chris Bergey, Senior VP & MD, Infrastructure Line of Business, Arm.

“We are pleased to see Cloudflare leverage the performance-per-watt benefits of Neoverse as they continue to build on and prioritise the overall efficiencies of its vast global network.”

“Cloudflare’s recent climate disclosures and commitments are encouraging, especially given how much traffic flows through their network.”

“Every provider should be transparent when it comes to accounting for the environmental impact of their services”, said Chris Adams, Co-director of The Green Web Foundation.

“There is growth in CDN users hosting their sites. They are often confused when their sites no longer show as green, because they’re not using a green CDN. It’s good to see another more sustainable option available to users, and one that is independently verified.”