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Offshore wind to power Google’s latest US$1 billion data center

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Google Headquarters in United States. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Google has started building a $1 billion data center in north of London that will be powered by Scottish offshore wind.

The data center will be located on a 33-acre site that the global tech giant purchased in the town of Waltham Cross in Hertfordshire. Once complete, it will help ensure reliable digital services to Google Cloud customers and Google users in the UK.

In support of its sustainable goal, Google previously announced a power purchase agreement with Engie for offshore wind energy generated by the 882MW Moray West offshore windfarm in Scotland.

The PPA adds 100 MW of carbon-free energy to the grid and puts the company’s UK operations on track to run at or near 90% carbon-free energy in 2025.

Google has begun building a new data centre in Hertfordshire. (Image: Google)

Moray West is one of the first wind farms worldwide to mainly rely on corporate power deals from the likes of Google rather than government support schemes. Amazon is also reportedly considering investing in the project.

Ruth Porat, CFO of Google and its parent company Alphabet, said, “People and organizations worldwide rely on Google’s data centers daily for the digital services they use.” She added that the new data center will help achieve “growing demand for our AI and cloud services.”

Google is pursuing net-zero emissions across its operations and value chain by 2030, supported by the ambitious goal of running all data centers and campuses on carbon-free energy.

The new facility will also be prepared for off-site heat recovery and will utilize an air-based cooling solution.

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