Facebook has announced that it is building a new data center in Fort Worth, Texas. The $1 billion facility will be completely powered with 100 percent clean energy, with the company commiting to powering all its operations with 50 percent renewable energy in the next three years.
The new data center will use wind power from a large wind farm that is also under construction. The farm is being built on 17,000 acres of land in Clay County, which is located about 90 miles from the data center site. Facebook worked with Citigroup Energy, Alterra Power Corporation, and Starwood Energy Group on the wind project, which should be delivering electricity by next year
Regarding the company's renewable energy policy, Tom Furlong, vice president of infrastructure at Facebook, said: “Thanks to our continued focus on efficiency and our investments in renewables in recent years, the carbon impact of one person’s use of Facebook for an entire year is the same as the carbon impact of a medium latte."
The Fort Worth facility will be the fifth data center the company has built, after facilities in Iowa, Oregon, North Carolina and Sweden. This isn’t Facebook’s first foray into using renewable energy; its data center in Iowa is also powered with energy from a nearby wind farm.
Facebook's Texas facility will be used to handle the growing demand from its 700 million Messenger users and 300 million Instagram users, as well as groups and companies that use Facebook platforms to build membership and businesses.
Facebook is not the only company transitioning to cleaner energy sources for its data centers; Google plans to build a similar facility powered by renewable energy in Alabama, and Amazon announced last month that it will build an 80-megawatt solar farm on the eastern shore of Virginia to help power its data centers in the area.