Google signs ten-year wind deal to power Dutch datacentre

The search giant's €600m datacentre in the Netherlands will take up one wind farm's output for the next ten years.
Written by Martin Gijzemijter, Contributor

Google has signed up to purchase all energy generated by a new wind farm built by Dutch energy provider Eneco.

The wind farm is currently under construction in the Dutch city of Delfzijl and Google has signed a ten-year deal to use its energy, announced this week, to run from early 2016.

As a result of the deal with Eneco, Google's new €600m datacentre currently being built in the Dutch port of Eemshaven, will be entirely powered by locally-generated sustainable energy from its first day of operation.

Google chose Eemshaven for the site of its new datacentre as it's the point where a key undersea fibre-optic cable enters the Netherlands, and there are several major energy providers in the vicinity. Google's datacentre, which will be the equivalent of over 40 football pitches in size, will house tens of thousands of servers, and obviously generate a significant energy bill.

The agreement with Eneco is Google's third power purchase agreement (PPA) over the past 18 months in Europe, and the eighth global agreement for the purchase of sustainable energy for its datacentres. Eneco has already begun construction of the new wind farm, which will consist of 18 turbines with a joint capacity of 62MW. The project will generate 80 jobs for local contractors over its 18-month construction period. 

Francois Sterin, director of global infrastructure at Google, described the deal as a win-win situation for the companies: "We agreed that our new datacentre in the Eemshaven would run on renewable energy from its very first day of operation, and this situation has now been realized. Power purchase agreements give wind farm developers such as Eneco the economic security to invest in new sustainable energy capacity. That is great news for the environment, but also very interesting for companies such as Google."

Eneco CEO Jeroen de Haas added: "This agreement with Google confirms the potential of wind energy and our efforts in the field of sustainable energy. We are looking forward to working with Google in the next 10 years and to assure Google's position as a carbon neutral company."

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