Apple's iCloud coal trains blocked by protestors

Greenpeace activists are accusing Apple of using dirty energy to power the giant data center behind its iCloud. Following a rather negative Greenpeace report on Apple's energy practices, protestors have taken their objections to another level by blocking the trains that supply the coal for powering Apple's Maiden, North Carolina data center.

Seven Greenpeace activists took to the train tracks used by Duke Energy and Apple for shipping coal. Four of the protestors locked themselves to the tracks near Marshall Steam Station in Catawba County, while two others hung a sign that read "Save Our Mountain Clean The Cloud." The protestors also branded the trains with the Apple logo to show that the Maiden data center will only be using more coal as it expands.

Police were called in and disbanded the protestors shortly. All seven were taken into custody and charged with trespassing.

Apple has been denying the claims in the Greenpeace report, saying that the environmental group's estimate of the iCloud's energy usage was five times more than its actual draw. Apple says that their Maiden data center uses only 20 megawatts at full capacity and calls it "an industry-leading project that will be the greenest data center ever built."

Solar energy currently isn't enough to power Apple's data center, meaning that a majority of electricity still comes from coal-fired power plants. In North Carolina, electricity happens to rely up to 62% on coal and the topic is rather controversial in the state.

[via Cult of Mac]