Microsoft invests in Texas wind farm to power San Antonio datacenterBy Mark Wilson on Monday, Nov 4th, 2013 at 08:17AM
Microsoft is demonstrating its commitment to green energy by investing in the Keechi Wind Farm Project in Texas. The company is entering into a 20 year purchase agreement with RES Americas that will see 100 percent of the wind farm's production used by Microsoft off to offset its carbon footprint.
By the end of 2015, the Keechi Wind Farm Project will comprise 55 turbines capable of producing 110 megawatts of power. The funding comes in part from Microsoft's own internal carbon fee model. The company essentially charges itself a fee for any carbon generated and then uses this to invest in green project in a bid to become carbon neutral.
Rob Bernard, Microsoft’s chief environmental strategist said: "We have a long standing ambition to move in the direction of sourcing more clean energy as a company, so over the last few years we've increasingly purchased something called RECs – renewable energy credits (more than 2.3 billion kWh globally) – and so this is an opportunity to go to the next stage and invest directly in green energy."
Construction of the wind farm is due to start in December, and with each turbine capable of producing power for 1,000 homes, Microsoft is going to be producing enough green electricity to power 55,000 households.
President and CEO of RES Americas, Susan Reilly said: "By signing a contract to buy power from the Keechi Wind project, Microsoft is making the financing, construction, and operation of this 110 megawatt project possible. To be clear: it would not have happened otherwise. The Texas electrical grid is like a pool, and Microsoft is adding clean, green wind power to that pool."