Facebook to use all renewable energy in its next data center

It will invest at least $US500 million in a 110-acre site in Texas

Facebook's planned new data center in Fort Worth, Texas.

Facebook's planned new data center in Fort Worth, Texas.

Facebook is building a new datacentre in Fort Worth, Texas, that will be powered entirely by renewable energy.

The company will invest at least $US500 million in the 110-acre site, which is expected to come online late next year.

The new location will be the social-networking giant's fifth such facility, joining existing data centers in Altoona, Iowa; Prineville, Oregon; Forest City, North Carolina; and Luleå, Sweden. It will feature equipment based on the latest in Facebook's Open Compute Project data-center hardware designs, it said.

For sustainability, the Fort Worth datacentre will be cooled using outdoor air rather than energy-intensive air conditioners, thanks to technology it pioneered in its Oregon location. Those designs are now offered through the Open Compute Project.

It will also be powered entirely by renewable energy as a result of a new, 200-megawatt wind project now under construction on a 17,000-acre site in nearby Clay County. Facebook has collaborated on that project with Citigroup Energy, Alterra Power Corporation and Starwood Energy Group; it expects the new source to begin delivering clean energy to the grid by 2016.

Facebook says its infrastructure efficiency efforts have helped it save more than $2 billion over the last three years. The carbon impact of one person's use of Facebook for an entire year, meanwhile, is now equivalent to that of a medium latte, Facebook said Tuesday.

The company aims to power its data centers with 50 percent renewable energy by the end of 2018, according to Jay Parikh, its vice president of engineering.

"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.

In sharp contrast, Pomerantz added, is Amazon Web Services, which "has failed to explain how it will power its newly announced data centers in Ohio and India, despite the company's commitment to use 100 per cent renewable energy."

Amazon didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Internet-based applications and servicesGreen data centerstoragesocial networkinginternetenvironmentFacebook

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Katherine Noyes

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?