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Facebook buys 160MW of renewable power for Henrico Data Center

Tech company takes contracted power with DESRI to 650MW across the US as plans to green data centre facilities continue at pace.

By João Marques Lima

Co-founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

3 Mins

October 26, 2021 | 4:00 AM BST

Facebook buys 160MW of renewable power for Henrico Data Center

Urvi Parekh, head of renewable energy at Facebook. Source: Facebook

Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) has signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) with US energy producer D. E. Shaw Renewable Investments (DESRI) to help power its data centres in the Virginia region, including the Henrico Data Center, located nearby in Eastern Henrico County.

Current status of Facebook’s Henrico data centre which continues to be under construction. Source: Virginia Economic Development Partnership

In total, the social media giant is buying 160MWac from the Chester Solar facility that will be built in Chesterfield County, Virginia. DESRI and Torch Clean Energy (Torch) are developing the project in partnership.

Chester is scheduled to supply new clean solar energy to Facebook, helping the company maintain its commitment to support its global operations with 100% renewable energy.

Hy Martin, chief development officer of DESRI, said: “The DESRI team is pleased to continue our strong relationship with Facebook, which, with the addition of Chester Solar, now totals over 650 MWac of contracted and operational clean power projects across the country.

“This project will create jobs, tax revenue, and other local economic development as Virginia becomes a national leader in the new energy economy. This facility is one of several renewable energy projects that our team has planned for large load centres in the PJM territory.”

The Chester Solar project is expected to deliver on an estimated 200 jobs during construction.

Overall plan of Facebook’s Henrico Data Center campus. Source: Facebook

Urvi Parekh, head of renewable energy at Facebook, said: “We are excited to partner with DESRI once again to bring new solar energy to the grid.

“This project will help us continue to support our global operations with 100% renewable energy and bring new investment and jobs to the state of Virginia.”

With the latest power purchase, Facebook has taken its contracted power with DESRI to 650MW across the US.

Since 2010, DESRI has built a portfolio across 25 states with over 6 GW of generation capacity.

DESRI is a member of the D. E. Shaw group, a global investment and technology development firm with more than US$55 billion in investment and committed capital as of June 1, 2021.

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João Marques Lima

Co-founder and Editor, The Tech Capital

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