Google buying wind power from NextEra Energy to run data centers

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San Francisco, July 20, 2010 – Internet giant Google struck a 20-year power purchase agreement with NextEra Energy Resources for 114 MW of wind power.

NextEra will supply Google‘s power-thirsty data centers with wind energy generated from NextEra’s Story II Wind Energy Center in Iowa. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The Iowa wind farm produces 150 MW of renewable energy, and began operation in December 2009. Power deliveries to Google will begin July 30. The remaining 36 MW from Story II are used by the city of Ames, Iowa.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission unanimously approved Google’s request to become an electricity marketer in February 2010, giving the California-based search engine company permission to become a market-based rate authority.

Google owns no generation assets or transmission lines to deliver power, but the company does operate an undisclosed number of large data processing centers, which have a large appetite for electricity.

In early January 2010, Google Energy LLC, a unit of Google, told FERC that the company wants authority to contain and manage the cost of its energy – as well as to gain greater access to renewable energy sources.

Google said requests such as these are not uncommon, as other companies with large power appetites have been given market-based rate authority from FERC.


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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at

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