Data centers use from 1 to 2 percent of world’s electricity. And only around a quarter of our current energy is renewable - there are still plenty types of conventional power used in order to get electricity. Examples of such ways are coal, oil, gas or nuclear energy. In turn, this means that the more servers there are, the more electricity they use. Because most our energy comes from conventional sources, servers increase our carbon footprint. In fact, a CLEER model simulation (a tool by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Northwestern University) published in Scientific American reveals an interesting fact. If all US companies would move their spreadsheet, email apps, customer management software and similar programs to the cloud, that would save enough a lot of energy. How much exactly? Enough to fully power the city of Los Angeles!
Cloud hosting, on the other hand, tackles the increase differently. Under the cloud environment, the website is hosted on a pool of unified computing resources. This simply means that if one server is reaching its optimum level, then a second server is ready to function. Similarly, if a server fails, the website will still be running as other servers will continue to serve the incoming traffic.
Cloud hosting is an alternative to hosting websites on single servers (either dedicated or shared servers) and can be considered as an extension of the concept of clustered hosting where websites are hosted on multiple servers. With cloud hosting, however, the network of servers that are used is vast and often pulled from different data centres in different locations.