Apple switches to renewable “Juice”

Technology giants are seeing a new area of competition with each other, sustainability.

California based household name, Apple, have made a switch to renewable energy. Currentlyall of their US data centres are run on clean energy. Their North Carolina data centre located in Maiden is currently supplied by a 400, 000 square metre solar array.

Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of environmental initiatives and the former head of the US Environmental Protection Authority (EPA), told Sky News why Apple had invested in the solar array.

“It’s business and it’s also the right thing to do. A data centre is really just about energy,” she said.
“The energy to run the servers inside, the energy to cool the servers. For us, it’s about knowing we have a stable and reliable source of electricity, at a stable price.

“More than the payoff on paper is the knowledge that we control this power supply.”

Its no secret that the technology industry has been on of the fastest growing sectors over the past few decades and as the sector grows so does its energy demand.

The Carbon Trust estimates that by 2020, the technology industry’s global carbon footprint will have tripled from its 2002 level, to 1.4bn tonnes of CO2.

According to the EU, the ICT industry is responsible for up to 10% of all energy use in Europe – the equivalent of the airline industry, or an industrial nation like Germany.

Much of that rise has been driven by an increase in demand for data centres, according to Andie Stephens of the Carbon Trust.
He said: “The main growth (in energy consumption) is in data centres – they’re growing at maybe 10% a year.”

Every time you search for something on your phone or computer, or open up an app, that information travels through the internet, to a data centre.
Billions of iMessages and millions of FaceTime calls are processed every day in Apple’s data centre in North Carolina.

The huge leap forward in the number of smart phones and tablets has caused a dramatic rise in requirement for data centers by technology giants like Apple, Google and Samsung. Companies like these are all rushing to develop renewable energy sources and secure their own low cost energy for the future.

Google has invested more than half a billion pounds in clean energy, including in the Ivanpah solar thermal plant and the largest wind farm in the world, and says that 34% of its energy use is from green sources.

Facebook also uses wind to power its data centres in Iowa.

Perhaps the biggest threat is to existing energy suppliers though.
Technology companies, which are driving a huge rise in energy consumption, are already looking elsewhere for their supplies.

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This entry was posted on Monday, July 28th, 2014 at 11:25 am and is filed under Commercial Solar, Energy Efficiency, Green Deal, Renewable Energy, Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.