Is Google the Ultimate Wattage Waster?

According to an article by the New York Times Google uses enough electricity to power 200,000 homes continuously!

That energy needed to power 200,000 homes equates to about 260 million watts which is about 25 % of the amount of power produced by a nuclear power plant. Even though Google claims to purchase 25% of its power from green sources or renewable fuels such as wind energy that is still a sizable amount of power consumed.

Google goes on to justify their heavy energy use by claiming that people are actually saving energy by searching online instead of driving their cars. I tend not to agree 100 percent with that because many Google search users will search for information such as a location, part, item, store, etc and then drive to it.

According to Google they estimate their 2010 total carbon emissions for 2010 to be just less than 1.5 million metric tons. Is this number supposed to be acceptable? Although there is really no way to prove it, one could probably guess that Google may very well be the largest, single consumer of power in the world.

Although Google is making efforts to purchase energy from renewable sources and did disclose their 2010 estimated electricity usage, one could consider their campaign to promote green and responsible energy as a way to mask their own massive energy consumption and huge carbon blueprint.

Is Google as green as they claim to be? What are your thoughts?