You’ve heard about green web hosting and the push for more sustainable and environmentally friendly companies, but why should you select eco web hosting for your website? What does the data say, and how serious is the global emissions crisis?
Read on to uncover the 13 best green web hosting companies. See which eco web hosting ranks highest, and who isn’t as sustainable or environmentally friendly as they advertise.
What’s the Big Deal with Green Web Hosting?
There are now around 2 billion websites on the world wide web. That alone is astonishing in its own way, but it becomes even more impressive when you consider that there were only 17 million websites in 2000. Clearly, the demand for web hosting is increasing at a rapid rate, and it’s not just websites anymore that occupy power-hungry server farms.
According to new research, the billions of internet-connected devices that are expected to connect to the internet could produce 3.5 percent of global emissions within ten years and 14 percent by 2040, increasing the power demand of the telecommunications industry from 2-300 TWh of electricity a year now to 1,200 or even 3,000 TWh by 2025.
That’s really bad news for every single living organism on our planet because data centers alone could produce roughly 3.2 percent of the global total carbon emissions. Fortunately, there is a growing number of environmentally friendly web hosting companies providing green web hosting services at prices that everyone can afford.
If you’re among the 78 percent of consumers who state that the environmental practices of the companies they deal with are important to them, this article is for you because we’ve rounded up the top 13 best green web hosting companies to give you plenty of choices when it comes to choosing sustainable web hosting and reducing the global total carbon emissions.
While most web hosting companies see green web hosting only as a potentially lucrative form of green marketing, GreenGeeks has built its web hosting platform from the ground up with sustainability in mind.
Offering green web hosting, green reseller hosting, green VPS hosting, and green WordPress hosting, this industry’s leading eco-friendly web hosting provider has been producing three times more power from renewable energy than consuming.
“The web hosting industry can be held accountable and can change course but only if consumers choose to go green and force other companies in the industry to do the right thing and become eco-friendly,” says Trey Gardner, CEO of GreenGeeks.
You may not expect such a large web hosting company as DreamHost to make a conscious effort to reduce its impact on the environment, but that’s exactly what it’s doing. The company has been investing a lot of money to utilize the most power-efficient processors available and improve the efficiency of its cooling infrastructure.
DreamHost offices rely on advanced lighting control systems with occupancy sensors paired with modern LEDs, which means that each and every DreamHost employee contributes to reducing carbon emissions in one way or another. Best of all, DreamHost’s eco-friendly hosting has remained extraordinarily affordable, starting at just $2.59 a month.
3. A2 Hosting
A2 Hosting offers FutureServe Green Hosting, which is a green web hosting solution that starts at just $3.92 a month and offers high performance, great customer support, and sustainability—all bundled into three hosting plans that can fit any budget.
To offset our server emissions in order to help protect our fragile environment, A2 Hosting has partnered with the Carbonfund.org Foundation, a not-for-profit organization that provides carbon offsetting and greenhouse gas reduction options. So far, contributions from A2 Hosting have helped neutralize over 2.3 million pounds of greenhouse gases, which is equivalent to greenhouse gas emissions from more than 800 passenger vehicles driven for one year.
“We are committed to doing right by our customers and the environment… we are pledging to offset our server emissions in order to help protect our fragile environment.” — Bryan Muthig, Founder and CEO of A2 Hosting.
4. InMotion Hosting
InMotion Hosting has been making a concentrated effort to improve its carbon footprint since 2010. The company has a green data center in Los Angles, utilizing advanced Outside Air Cooling technology to reduce its cooling costs by as much as 70 percent per year, which translates into over 2,000 tons per year less carbon emissions.
InMotion Hosting also works hand-in-hand with Trees For The Future, a Maryland-based nonprofit organization dedicated to helping communities around the world plant trees. Together they’ve planted more than 5,000 trees throughout the developing world, creating countless jobs in the process.
Frequently selected as one of the best cheap green web hosting providers, iPage offers multiple attractive web hosting plans and gives a 30-day money-back guarantee to all new customers, who also receive a special introductory offer that includes a free domain name and a 75 percent discount on web hosting.
Regardless of which iPage web hosting plan you choose, your hosting will always be eco-friendly because iPage buys Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) to offset the electricity it uses with electricity created from a renewable source.
When it comes to green web hosting UK, Kualo is an easy choice. This dynamic web hosting company is entirely powered by renewable energy, and its infrastructure is designed to be as energy efficient as possible, taking full advantage of low power servers, virtualization technology, and modern cooling solutions.
Unlike many supposedly green web hosting companies that make bold claims but have nothing to show for them, Kualo is certified by Green-e, a trusted global leader in clean energy certification. Besides being environmentally friendly, Kualo is also budget-friendly, offering shared web hosting from just $3.99 a month and green server hosting from $29.99 a month.
HostPapa was one of the first web hosting companies to make a public commitment to going green, and this Canadian-based privately-owned web hosting company currently runs 100 percent on renewable energy by purchasing green energy tags from a certified green energy supplier. As such, HostPapa essentially pumps just as much energy back into the power grid as it consumes.
With a little over 500,000 websites, HostPapa certainly isn’t a large provider, but that only makes it more appealing to individual home users and small businesses. We especially like HostPapa’s web builder, which makes it incredibly easy to create a professional website at a fraction of the cost a professional web designer would charge for it.
Based in Houston, Texas, HostGator is a large web hosting company with a strong commitment to sustainability. In 2008, HostGator announced that 1.3 million websites hosted on its servers were powered by wind power, which was an astonishing feat considering that HostGator accounted for approximately 1.3 percent of all the domains on the entire internet at the time.
Furthermore, the company has been purchasing RECs for 130 percent of the electricity used to power and cool HostGator data centers. According to Brent Oxley, founder and CEO of HostGator, the company is “going to continue doing what we can to reduce Greenhouse Gas emissions and help the environment.”
To deserve the label of an environmentally friendly web hosting company, SiteGround not only embraces modern technology to become more efficient but it also approaches sustainability from a uniquely personal angle, planting trees and cleaning the area surrounding its facilities.
“To us, the key to being green friendly is efficiency. Through server virtualization, we minimize server overhead and reduce carbon footprint,” tweeted SiteGround in 2015. The company’s ongoing fast adoption of the best web hosting technologies has paid off on multiple occasions because it was among the first to use Linux containers and offer custom Let’s Encrypt SSL integration.
If you’re interested in trying SiteGround’s green friendly hosting and looking for the best deal, see our SiteGround coupon page for the latest discounts.
Fat Cow has been committed to sustainability for more than a decade now. Back in 2009, the web hosting company was purchasing 4,412,000 kWhs per year of wind-generated RECs. “We’re offsetting all of our electricity use by purchasing wind-generated Renewable Energy Certificates,” explained FatCow’s Marketing Manager Paul Bukhovko.
What makes Fat Cow stand out from other green web hosting companies is its Original Fat Cow web hosting plan, which includes everything necessary to get a personal or business website up and running, including unlimited disk space and bandwidth, easy-to-use site creation tools, easy-to-install blogs and forums, and more—all for just $49 a year.
11. 1&1 Hosting
1&1, formerly 1and1.com, is Europe’s largest hosting provider, offering state-of-the-art web hosting services backed by 30 years of experience, 24/7/365 support, risk-free contracts that include a 30-day money-back guarantee, and full flexibility when it comes to its monthly contract terms.
1&1 is committed to supporting renewable energy programs and minimizing the impact its business has on the environment. The company has been able to significantly reduce its energy consumption thanks to highly efficient power supplies, paperless billing, and responsible office practices. 1&1 estimates that its global initiatives allow it to prevent 30,000 tons of CO2 emissions per year, which equals to the energy usage of around 3,500 homes for one year.
There aren’t too many green web hosting companies that use Verified/Voluntary Emission Reductions (VERs) to offset their carbon footprint, but EcoHosting is one of them. VERs are typically created by projects and verified by an independent third party in accordance with various rules defining how emission reductions are measured.
As an entirely UK-based green web hosting company with UK-based customer support, EcoHosting is particularly popular among UK citizens and those who would like to establish a foothold in Europe. The company offers green WordPress hosting, green email hosting, green shared web hosting, green reseller hosting, and several other products, including a web builder and security certificates.
13. Acorn Host
Acorn Host is powered by 100 percent green energy from wind and solar sources, and the company is committed to buying RECs not only to cover the energy used to run its data centers but also its offices. “You buy organic produce. You bring your own bags to the grocery store. You drive a fuel-efficient car, or you go by bike. Now your web hosting choice can make a difference too,” states Acorn Host on its website.
All Acorn Host plans include scripts for the easy installation of WordPress, Joomla, and other content management systems, user-friendly control panel, best-in-class security, powerful email tools, support for multiple websites, web traffic statistics, and 24/7 technical support. They, unfortunately, don’t include unlimited speed and bandwidth.
What Is Green Website Hosting?
All websites live on servers, which are typically located inside large data centers that generate a lot of heat and consume lots of energy. In fact, the carbon dioxide (CO2) output of data centers is so large that the internet is estimated to produce about as much CO2 emissions as the aviation industry, according to the Web Neutral Project.
The average website is responsible for approximately 4,700 pounds of CO2, which equals to CO2 emissions from 240 gallons of gasoline consumed. If you’re an environmentally conscientious individual who cares about the health of the only planet humans can currently live on, then it makes sense to choose a web hosting provider that recognizes the environmental impact of the internet and actively tries to carry out various green initiatives to mitigate it.
That’s where companies like GreenGeeks come in, as they replace 3 times the power they consume in the form of renewable and sustainable green energy. In addition, there are many other green web hosting companies to choose from, as ranked in this article. From affordable green hosting companies like iPage.com to companies that provide dedicated green server hosting like InMotionHosting.com or HostGator.com to green web hosting UK like Kualo or EcoHosting, regardless of what your hosting needs are, you are guaranteed to find a green web hosting company that can meet them.
Because green web hosting companies typically invest in some form of carbon offsetting scheme, such as Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) and Verified/Voluntary Emission Reductions (VERs), and spend money to modernize their infrastructure, you may find them more expensive than web hosting companies that don’t care about the environment. Fortunately, more and more green web hosting companies are able to offer the same prices as their polluting counterparts, making them an easy choice.
Green WordPress Hosting
WordPress is the most popular content management system in the world, and it’s estimated that 75,000,000 websites are using it right now. Since the average website is responsible for approximately 4,700 pounds of CO2, it means that all WordPress sites together produce as much CO2 as nearly 34 million passenger vehicles driven for one year—that’s a huge number.
No wonder then that the demand for green WordPress hosting is growing every year. Our favorite provider of green WordPress hosting is GreenGeeks due to their authentic green-first initiative. All GreenGeeks plans include unlimited traffic, unlimited super-fast SSD storage, a free SSL certificate, a free domain name, and many other perks that make them very attractive above and beyond their eco-friendly promise. They also rank well on our ultimate guide to the best WordPress hosting companies.
Green Web Hosting UK
The United Kingdom is a prime destination for websites targeting people living in Europe, so it’s no wonder that it has no shortage of excellent green web hosting providers, such as Kualo and EcoHosting.
Kualo has been around for more than 15 years, and it has since then grown to host over 100,000 websites for customers in over 90 countries worldwide. All data centers operated by Kualo are powered completely by renewable energy, which goes to show how committed the company is to being as green as possible.
However, that’s not to say that EcoHosting isn’t an excellent green web hosting UK company as well, providing carbon-neutral web hosting based entirely in the UK with prices starting at just £1.50 per month.
How to Migrate to a Green Hosting Company
If you’re committed to living a green life, then migrating to a green web hosting provider is an easy choice to make, especially since most green web hosting providers make it very easy to switch hosts.
- Step 1: Select a green web hosting provider and choose a hosting plan that best fits your needs. Don’t cancel your existing web hosting plan until your website is fully migrated.
- Step 2: With two hosting accounts, the next step is to migrate your website from the old hosting to the new one. Depending on the complexity of your website, this may be either very easy or incredibly tricky. The good news is that many green web hosting providers are more than happy to help you switch hosts, including GreenGeeks.
- Step 3: After transferring all files to your new host and changing the DNS settings according to the instructions provided by your new hosting company, it’s time to cancel your old hosting and enjoy the fact that you’re helping make the world a better place.
Another perk to GreenGeeks, our #1 recommended green web hosting provider, is that they offer free migration service. They’ll transfer your website from your old host to their renewable energy sustained green hosting platform — free!
Migrating Your Website To GreenGeeks
- Signup with GreenGeeks for as little as $2.95/month.
- Provide GreenGeeks support with your current web hosting login credentials.
- Go relax while the experts at GreenGeeks migrate your website to their platform. They will notify you once complete.
- Delete your old web hosting account, and be pleased to know your same website is now running on beautiful, sustainable, green web hosting!
Why Eco Web Hosting Is Important
With the negative impact of humans on nature becoming increasingly more evident, companies and individuals alike can’t afford to ignore the amount of carbon emissions produced by the internet, and they must use sustainable web hosting to protect the planet for future generations. If that’s not enough, new consumer data now shows that customers prefer doing business with sustainable companies, if given the choice over a competitor. This means not only will you be helping our planet, being more environmentally responsible and reducing your carbon footprint, but you may also be boosting your sales and brand perception at the same time. A win-win you can feel good about!
If you’re ready to do your part and make the choice to host with an eco web hosting company, then consider our #1 choice for green web hosting, GreenGeeks.