This is why I was hoping
that someone could explain the technicalities of the U.S. energy system to
me – can't we simply ask our datacenter providers to order renewable energy
for our servers, maybe for an extra charge? This is what you can do in
Europe, but I have a feeling things are not just as easy in the U.S.
In the U.S., electrical utilities are mostly regulated at the state level,
not the federal level. There is no federal renewable energy policy (AFAIK),
but over half of the states in the U.S. have a renewable portfolio standard
requiring utility companies to supply some percentage of their electricity
from renewable sources. In addition, some utility companies in the U.S. let
consumers purchase "green energy" at a higher price. So basically, you
would need to investigate the policies of the specific electricity
companies used by the datacenters as well as the policies of the states
they reside in.