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Saturday, 05 December 2009 03:39

'Green' search engine coming next week

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Next Monday -- the same day climate talks get underway in Copenhagen -- a new search engine, Ecosia, will make its debut. The site generates ad revenue the same way Google and Bing do, but 80 percent of revenues go to the World Wildlife Fund.

According to an Ecosia (pronounced Ee-KOH-zee-a) explanatory video, a standard Internet search using Google could have a carbon footprint as large as a lightbulb burning for a full hour.

Ecosia searches -- whose results come from Bing and Yahoo -- will presumably use  the same amount of electricity, but according to the company, all of its servers run on green electricity so there are no carbon emissions.

Ecosia will generate ad revenue from sponsored links (also from Bing and Yahoo), as other search engines do, but it will donate more than 80 percent of that revenue to the WWF's rainforest protection project.

The organization estimates that every search can help save up to two square meters of rainforest. The site will provide personal statistics on how much rainforest each searcher has protected.

The search engine is set to launch on Monday, to coincide with the world climate meeting starting that day.

To use Ecosia, searchers can go to www.ecosia.org and use the search bar. But the company also provides plug-ins for Firefox, Chrome, Opera, and Internet Explorer that enable Ecosia searching right from the browser's search bar. A plug-in for Safari is on the way.


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