One of the largest IT tech giant company Google said in a news today that it has signed a 10-year deal to buy renewable energy from three new wind farms that are being built in the country Finland and which will power one of its data centres.
Some of the more big companies have rushed to secure cheap renewable energy to cut down the cost and reduce their carbon footprint through so-called corporate power purchase agreements (PPAs), which will allow firms such as Google, owned by Alphabet, social media platform Facebook, and Microsoft to buy directly from the energy generator.
Google said in a report on Tuesday that the Finnish deal is the first where it is buying power from European projects that will not receive any government subsidies.
“In a growing number of locations, the cost of new renewable energy is competitive with the cost of power from the grid,” Marc Oman, Google's head of EU energy, said in a blog. The combined capacity of the three farms will be 190 megawatts (MW) and will be built by renewable energy developers Neoen of France and Germany's CPC and WPD.
New wind power installations in Europe dropped by more than a quarter in the first half of 2018 to 4.5 gigawatt (GW), industry association WindEurope data shows, highlighting tighter competition as governments phase out industry support. Wind has become one of the more competitive with conventional power in many countries and large are managing volatile energy expenses by just locking in electricity costs which is available at a fixed costs.
Around in the month of 2017, the number of new corporate PPAs, primarily wind and solar, reached a record with more than 5 gigawatt contracted, up almost a third from the year 2016 level, the International Renewable Energy Agency said.
Some of the more European countries, most notably the two Germany and the Netherlands, have recently attracted zero-subsidy bids from wind project developers, putting intense pressure on turbine makers as the industry weans itself off government support. Google's Finnish data centre is situated in a former paper mill built originally in the 1950s and uses water from the Baltic Sea for cooling.
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