Google buys 536MW from US wind farms

UNITED STATES: Google has signed power purchase agreements (PPA) for 536MW of wind power from EDF Renewable Energy, Iberdrola subsidiary Avangrid Renewables and the Grand River Dam Authority (GRDA).

Google aims to source enough renewable energy to power its global operations (pic credit: Luis Villa del Campo)

It will source wind-generated electricity from EDF RE’s newly announced 200MW Glacier’s Edge project in Iowa, Avangrid’s Coyote Ridge and Tatanka Ridge wind farms, both of which are 98MW and in South Dakota, and 140MW from the 300MW Red Dirt site in Oklahoma.

Glacier’s Edge is to be located near the city of Marcus in western Cherokee County in the north west of Iowa, and is scheduled to be online in December 2019, EDF RE stated.

Tatanka Ridge in Deuel County, South Dakota was commissioned in 2008, while Coyote Ridge in neighbouring Brookings County is due online in 2020, according to Windpower Intelligence, the research and data division of Windpower Monthly.

The GRDA had initially signed a 140MW off-take deal with Enel Green Power for the developer’s 300MW Red Dirt site, but the utility has now sold this power to Google. The 100-turbine wind farm is due online in January, the GRDA stated.

The power bought from the four sites will help Google meet its aim of purchasing enough renewable energy to match its global energy consumption.

The deals mean Google has now bought more than 3GW of wind and solar power, the company stated.

— Google (@Google) 30 November 2017

Last year the company agreed to buy all the power generated from the 160MW Tellenes wind farm in Norway and the 148MW Lehtirova project in Sweden to power its European data centres.

Gary Demasi, Google’s director of global infrastructure said the new PPAs were an economic decision as well as an environmental commitment.

He said: "With solar and wind declining dramatically in cost and propelling significant employment growth, the transition to clean energy is driving unprecedented economic opportunity and doing so faster than we ever anticipated."