Google announced today that it has invested $100 million in the Shepherds Flat Wind Farm, which is expected to be the world’s largest wind farm when it is completed next year.
The Shepherds Flat, currently under construction in “windy” Arlington, OR, is estimated to produce about 845 megawatts of energy, which is “enough to power more than 235,000 homes,” Google said in a statement on its website.
“This project is exciting to us not only because of its size and scale, but also because it uses advanced technology,” writes Google. “This will be the first commercial wind farm in the U.S. to deploy, at scale, turbines that use permanent magnet generators—tech-speak for evolutionary turbine technology that will improve efficiency, reliability and grid connection capabilities.”
The energy produced by the Shepherds Flat Wind Farm will be sold to Southern California Edison.
Other investors in the project include Caithness Energer and General Electric, an a variety of others.
This investment is the latest in a string of clean energy investments made by Google, the total of which now comes to $350 million.
Just last week, Google announced that it had invested $168 million in a solar tower power plant, which is currently being built in California’s Mojave Desert. That plant, which is being funded in part by $1.6 billion in loans and guarantees from the US Department of Energy, will also be the largest of its kind ever built.
Google has long committed itself to helping develop alternative energies, partially due to the staggering amounts of energy Google uses to power its massive data centers.
The search giant has entered the energy industry in other ways, as well. In January, Google submitted a filing with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in the hopes of being allowed to buy and sell energy at cheaper, wholesale costs. Seeing as the company’s investment in Shepherds Flat comes from Google’s business arm, as opposed to its philanthropic organization, Google.org, it’s safe to assume this investment isn’t only for the well being of precious Mother Earth.
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