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Apple to power NC data center with PV array

Today Apple announced plans to build the nation’s largest end-user-owned onsite solar array at its North Carolina data center.

The company released an update of it’s environmental report, titled “Facilities Report: 2012 Environmental Update,” with details of the installation. The data center, in Maiden, NC, houses Apple’s iCloud service.

The tech giant claims this move shows a “commitment to reducing the environmental impact of [their] facilities through energy-efficient, green building design.”

Apple’s facilities, though, only account for 2 percent of the firm’s greenhouse gas emissions – or around 378,000 metric tons of greenhouse gases per year. As of now, only a few of it’s facilities worldwide – located in Germany, Ireland, Texas and California – run completely on renewable energy.

Apple's data center in Maiden, NC. Photo Credit: Apple

“Onsite generation allows Apple to meet our energy needs within our own footprint, where possible, while also minimizing grid dependence and reducing environmental impact,” the report said. “[W]e continue to work toward the goal of achieving a net zero energy program for our corporate facilities worldwide.”

The data center purportedly cost $1 billion to build, and was completed last year. The 20 MW solar array will cover 100 acres near the data center, and will supply 42 million kWh of energy annually. The report did not note when the array will be completed.

Read the full report, with details of other energy-saving developments at Apple facilities, here.


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