Microsoft is making its software greener than ever

Green Software Foundation
(Image credit: Microsoft)
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Microsoft is joining forces with Accenture, GitHub and ThoughtWorks to create a new foundation dedicated to putting sustainability and green initiatives (opens in new tab) at the core of software engineering.

Software development has been front and center at the company's Build 2021 (opens in new tab) developer conference. However, Microsoft and other companies have begun to wonder how the future of the software industry will affect the environment especially with global data centers accounting for one percent of the world's electricity demand today and between three to eight percent in the next decade.

To address the impact the software industry has on the global environment, Microsoft, Acenture, GitHub and ThoughtWorks have established a new nonprofit called the Green Software Foundation with the Linux Foundation (opens in new tab) and the Joint Development Foundation Projects LLC.

Green Software Foundation

The goal of the Green Software Foundation (opens in new tab) is to build a trusted ecosystem of people, standards, tooling and leading practices for building green software.

The foundation itself was born out of a mutual desire and need to collaborate across the software industry when it comes to sustainability to contribute to the information and communication technology sector's broader targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 45 percent by 2030 which is in line with the Paris Climate Agreement (opens in new tab).

President of Microsoft, Brad Smith explained why the software giant decided to become one of the founding members of the Green Software Foundation in a blog post (opens in new tab), saying:

“The scientific consensus is clear: the world confronts an urgent carbon problem. It will take all of us working together to create innovative solutions to drastically reduce emissions. Today, Microsoft is joining with organizations who are serious about an environmentally sustainable future to drive adoption of green software development to help our customers and partners around the world reduce their carbon footprint.” 

The Green Software Foundation is open to any organization with a shared commitment to sustainability and an interest in green software development principles which means we'll likely see other companies join the foundation soon.

After working with the TechRadar Pro team for the last several years, Anthony is now the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. When not writing, you can find him tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.