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Microsoft invests in more renewable energy for US data centers

12 Mar 2019
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Microsoft has announced an agreement with EDP Renewables to execute two 15-year power purchase agreements (PPA).

These are worth 125 MW in aggregate that will bring the Timber Road IV Wind Farm to Ohio’s Paulding County.

The 125 MW Timber Road IV Wind Farm is expected to be operational in 2019 and will produce enough clean electricity to annually power more than 36,000 average Ohio homes.

The companies assert the new wind farm will also bring employment opportunities with around 200 construction jobs expected and seven full-time positions during operations.

In addition, the new wind farm will generate approximately $1.1 million each year in annual property tax revenue for the local government as well as land lease payments to area farmers and landowners.

“Bringing new wind projects online, particularly in states with relatively few projects but strong potential for growth, delivers both economic benefits and environmental progress in the near term and well into the future,” says Microsoft Energy and Sustainability general manager Brian Janous, general manager.

“We are constantly looking for opportunities where our corporate demand can not only be met but can also accelerate the transition to renewable sources. EDPR has done great work in Ohio, and we’re pleased to partner with them to grow this market.”

These agreements with EDPR bring Microsoft’s directly purchased renewable energy portfolio to nearly 1.4 gigawatts (GW). Timber Road IV Wind Farm is Microsoft’s fifth project in the larger PJM region.

“Microsoft exemplifies admirable energy supply and sustainability goals, and EDP Renewables is proud to partner with it to accelerate its efforts to power its data centers with renewable energy sources,” says EDP Renewables North America CEO Miguel Prado.

“Agreements like these are a prime example of EDP Renewables’ ability to work with corporate customers to help them achieve their renewable energy targets and reduce carbon emissions.”

Microsoft has made extensive investments around the world recently to present a green picture to its massive global operations.

“We applaud this partnership between EDP Renewables and Microsoft that will allow Microsoft to power its operations on the larger PJM grid with clean, homegrown wind energy from Paulding County,” says JobsOhio vice president and head of economic development Dana Saucier.

“Every day we see more and more companies choosing competitively priced renewable energy. Ohio has an excellent opportunity to provide it through arrangements like this that also serve to supplement local farm income, generate stable tax revenues for schools and local government, and create jobs and opportunity in some of Ohio’s most rural communities.”