Google unveils alternative energy plan

Google is expanding into alternative energy in its most ambitious effort yet to ease the environmental strain caused by the company's voracious appetite for power to run its massive computing centers, an Associated Press report said.

The Associated Press report said as part of a project, the internet search leader and its philanthropic arm will pour hundreds of millions of dollars into a quest to lower the cost of producing electricity from renewable energy sources such as wind and the sun.

If Google realizes its goal, the cost of solar power should fall by 25% to 50%, co-founder Larry Page, quoted by the Associated Press, said.

The Mountain View-based company initially hopes to harvest cleaner-burning electricity to meet its own needs and sell power to other users or license the technology that emerges from its initiative, dubbed 'Renewable Energy Cheaper Than Coal,' the Associated Press report said.

The rpeort further said Google's initiative will likely stand out because of its financial muscle and its renowned brand, according to Nicholas Parker, chairman of the Cleantech Network, a group that tracks investments in alternative energy.