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Netflix Just Started Reporting Renewable Energy Use and Content Removal

By Anders Bylund - Feb 8, 2020 at 10:58PM

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The streaming video veteran will make these reports annually from now on.

Streaming video giant Netflix (NFLX -0.08%) has published a report on the company's environmental impact. This appears to be the first full report of its kind.

Red Netflix logo on a beige stucco wall.

Image source: Netflix.

Renewable energy

Netflix effectively sources all of its electric power from renewable sources. Where no direct source of green power is available, the company purchases renewable energy certificates (RNEs) to make up the difference. In this way, green energy powered Netflix's entire internal power consumption of 94 gigawatt hours (GWh) in 2019.

The report also addressed the 357 GWh that was required to drive Netflix's external computing and networking operations through partners such as Alphabet's (GOOG 0.19%) (GOOGL 0.33%) Google Cloud and Amazon.com's (AMZN -0.26%) Amazon Web Services. In this case, the entire power activity was matched to an equal amount of RNEs.

Netflix's renewable power record is not completely airtight, though. The company doesn't support the indirect power needs of 167 million global subscribers through RNEs.

For the record, Netflix's internal power drain stood at 40 GWh in the summer of 2017 alongside an estimated third-party power consumption of 100 GWh.

Content removal

The report also shows that Netflix has removed just nine titles from its streaming services following requests by various governments. This is the first such report, though the company promises to make it an annual habit.

So far, Singapore is the only country that's lost more than one Netflix title to government requests. The Asian city-state's Netflix catalog has lost three cannabis-related documentaries and two entertainment titles with controversial views of Christianity.

This shortlist covers only titles that once were available to Netflix customers but then were removed. The catalog also varies greatly from country to country based on licensing deals or regulatory content restrictions.

John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market, an Amazon subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Suzanne Frey, an executive at Alphabet, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Anders Bylund owns shares of Alphabet (A shares), Amazon, and Netflix. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Alphabet (A and C shares), Amazon, and Netflix. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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