Facebook’s Newest Data Center Will Rely Solely on Renewable Energy

Posted on July 08, 2015 by .

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Fort Worth, TX has been selected to be the location for Facebook’s new $500 million 110-acre data center. When it is expected to go online late next year, the data center will rely solely on renewable energy to keep the massive facility running.

The new location will be among the social networking giant’s several facilities, making it the fifth of its kind outside of the current Forest City, NC; Prineville, OR; Altoona, IA; and the Lulea, Sweden facilities.

Sustaining the facility and its use of electricity, the Fort Worth Facebook center will be cooled using outdoor air instead of energy-intensive air conditioners. This is in part thanks to technology pioneered in its Oregon location. Talking about complex engineering that works for the good of us all.

The renewable energy will be supplied and sustained through a new 200-megawatt wind project that is currently under construction. The wind project sits on a massive 17,000-acre site in the neighboring Clay County. Facebook has made inroads with other local entities to make this wind project site one that will “fit” into the current electrical grid an infrastructure by pegging Citigroup Energy, Starwood Energy Group, and Alterra Power Corporation for their collaboration in such an undertaking. The new source of power will be live and delivering energy to the grid by 2016, in time for the Facebook data center to go live later in the year.

“Facebook’s new goal of using 50 percent renewable energy and commitment to powering its Texas data center with clean wind power demonstrates the kind of transparency needed to show that it is making steady progress toward its goal of using 100 percent renewable energy,” David Pomerantz, senior climate and energy campaigner with Greenpeace, said in a statement.

Facebook is currently aiming to power all of its data centers with nearly 50 percent of renewable energy by the end of 2018. As a contrast, Amazon has said before that they want to use 100% renewable energy to power its data centers – a feat that has yet been figured out how to accomplish. It seems Facebook has a slight jump on things and will legitimately pull off 100% renewable energy in its new Fort Worth, TX data center while the other four centers work towards a 50% goal.

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