Amazon Building Huge New Wind Farm in Texas

September 24, 2016, 8:47 PM UTC
Spearville Wind Farm Turbines
Photograph by Mark Reinstein — Corbis via Getty Images

Amazon has announced that it will develop its largest wind farm yet: a 100 turbine, 253 Megawatt facility in Texas. It is slated to open in late 2017.

Amazon has been building out wind generation capacity in part to power the servers hosting Amazon Web Services. The unit has a long-term commitment to power 100% of its services through renewable energy, and according to the company, 40% of AWS’ power will come from renewable sources by the end of 2016. Amazon’s renewable energy installations also include wind farms in Indiana, North Carolina, and Ohio, and a solar farm in Virginia.

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But critics have pointed out the AWS roadmap is not as detailed as it could be, and it’s in a renewables race with other tech giants.

Google is also aiming for 100% renewable sources, and has said it is the largest non-utility purchaser of renewable energy in the world. Apple claims that in 2015, 93% of its energy came from renewable sources, and its data centers are already 100% run on renewables (though that claim does rely on carbon trading). Facebook, which also uses Texas wind facilities, is aiming for 50% of its data center power to come from renewables by 2018. Even slightly smaller companies like Salesforce have made big commitments to renewable energy.

For more on renewable energy, watch our video.

The new Amazon wind farm is being developed in partnership with Lincoln Clean Energy. Lincoln founder and CEO Declan Flanagan said in a statement that these sorts of direct purchases of renewable energy projects by large customers has become a “key driver of the transition to renewable power” in the United States.

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