What is the GreenFediverse?
GreenFediverse is a open project to empower the Fediverse to run on servers with renewable energy and creating awareness for a sustainable development of it. GreenFediverse provides a critical list about servers and their renewable energy consumption status in a Green Instances List
Why not being the first dezentralised social network that runs on renewable energy?
A brief history:
The open project started in 03/2019 with a mastodon-account: GreenFediverse. In the beginning the community around the project created some manually edited lists: Old Instances List and a Green Webhoster List. In 2020 attac_hl worked on the technical realization of a new Green Instances List and combined the databases from http://sp3r4z.fr/mastodon (dead link) and the GreenWebFoundation. You can find the code in the repository of the project. In 2021 and thanks to aligyie, a new subjective Green Webhost Ranking was created. In May, the project updated the list of green instances and the information collected by the community about various web hosts. moagee and a friend are developing a new list which will hopefully drop in 2021.
Why are we doing this?
We, as users of the federated universe called "fediverse", a decentralized social network, are aware that our self-hosted instances run on servers with different types of energy consumption. The worldwide need for energy, especially for our datacenters will increase and the question is: What kind of energy will we use in the future? Which datacenters and services should we prefer? Green webhosting will be one of the important key factors facing the climate crisis on our planet. We are also facing the problem of intransparency and the complexity of the energy market. Are there bad players on the market? How can we find out which energy suppliers offer us real green energy without greenwashing? With our lists we get a first but not complete overview about webhosting provider and fediverse instances which are using renewable energy for their servers. We want to take a deeper look inside and on our digital infrastruture. With this first step we try to combine ecology, sustainability and technical aspects and make them more visible for everyone - our main goal is to create awareness for a sustainable development of the fediverse and for this whole ongoing topic. We are also aware that it is not possible to use green energy everywhere on our planet. We are aware that the production of the hardware the server uses takes place under different conditions and that the exploitation of human and nature does not stop here. Therefore, this does not only open up questions that are limited to ecology, sustainability and technology, but also social and human rights aspects that are unfortunately always disregarded. Naming this conditions and inequalities is just a first step.
We can still use the open GreenWebFoundation API and their dataset to let the databases collide with each other. "The Green Web Foundation is a recognized not-for-profit organisation registered in the Netherlands, that is run by a small group of dedicated volunteers located in Germany and The Netherlands." "Our strategy is simple: we use the existing protocols of the internet to understand where infrastructure is run, when we speak to the people running it to see how they power it. We then make these answers easy to look up, providing free online tools, APIs and open datasets, and helping people incorporate this information into their own services and analysis." The GreenWebFoundation is also on github
You can use and implement the script as you like - feel free to experiment with it. GreenFediverse is and will be a non-commercial and open project!