In an important milestone for data center owners and operators everywhere, Apple reported that all of its data centers were now fully powered by renewable energy, including facilities in North Carolina, California, Nevada, and Oregon.
This means data centers that support services like iTunes now get 100% of their power from a combination of renewable energy purchased by the company combined with on-site generation capacity, according to the company’s latest environmental statement.
The Apple statement, available online, sets the highest of bars. Apple says its goal is to power every Apple facility, both data centers and offices, “entirely with energy from renewable sources — solar, wind, hydro, and geothermal.”
In a report filed by Datacenter Dynamics, Gary Cook, senior IT analyst at Greenpeace, said the news demonstrated progress in Apple’s commitment to a clean energy future. “Apple’s increased level of disclosure about its energy sources helps customers know that their iCloud will be powered by clean energy sources, not coal,” he said.
According to Datacenter Dynamics, “Apple doubled the size of an already huge solar array in North Carolina, buying another 100 acres of land to support the expansion. The two separate 100-acre solar arrays in Maiden, N.C. each produce 42 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of energy annually.”
Data Center Knowledge also took note of the 100% milestone, noting “the road to renewable was a formidable one.”
This journey was accelerated when, writes Data Center Knowledge, “Greenpeace called Apple out at an Uptime Symposium saying that it and Facebook should ‘wield (its) power to alter the energy paradigm.’ Apple has since stepped up in a big way. Since 2010, it has achieved a 114 percent increase in the usage of renewable energy at corporate facilities worldwide, up to 70 percent overall from 35 percent.”
Kudos to Apple.