Amazon heats up renewable energy efforts

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Amazon heats up renewable energy efforts

By Dan Berthiaume - 08/01/2019
Amazon will open a new solar farm in the U.S. and a new wind farm in the E.U.

The e-tail giant is investing in its 65th and 66th renewable energy projects. Amazon’s newest renewable energy project in the U.S. will be located in Pittsylvania County, Virginia, and will be the seventh Amazon solar farm in the state. Once complete, the new Amazon solar farm will provide 45 megawatts (MW) of renewable capacity and is expected to generate 100,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of clean energy annually.

Meanwhile, Amazon’s newest renewable energy project in the EU will be located in Cork, Ireland, and will be the second Amazon wind farm in the Republic of Ireland. The new Amazon wind farm will provide 23.2 megawatts (MW) of renewable capacity, with expected generation of 68,000 megawatt hours (MWh) of clean energy annually.

Both projects are expected to begin producing clean energy in 2020 and will supply clean energy to the company’s Amazon Web Services (AWS) datacenters, which power Amazon and millions of AWS customers globally.

According to Amazon, its solar projects in the U.S. have offset the carbon dioxide equivalent of more than 200 million miles of truck deliveries. Globally, Amazon has 66 renewable energy projects, including 51 solar rooftops, that are expected to generate 1,342 MW of renewable capacity and deliver more than 3.9 million MWh of clean energy annually.

“Playing a significant role in helping to reduce the sources of human-induced climate change is an important commitment for Amazon,” said Kara Hurst, director of sustainability, Amazon. “Major investments in renewable energy are a critical step to address our carbon footprint globally. We will continue to invest in these projects, and look forward to additional investments this year and beyond.”

In addition to its investments in solar and wind farms, Amazon is running ahead of its aggressive growth plans for rooftop solar systems. The e-tailer has already met its commitment to install 50 solar systems on its fulfillment and sortation center rooftops globally by 2020. The on-site solar systems reduce Amazon’s reliance on fossil fuels, and can generate as much as 80% of a single fulfillment facility’s annual energy needs.

Additionally, Amazon was ranked No. 1 in the U.S. for the amount of corporate on-site solar installed in 2018 by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).

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