Amazon in Talks with Japanese Power Companies to Power its Data Centres with Offshore Wind Energy

The Japanese government opened zones near the sea for offshore wind development, Amazon has been considering constructing an offshore wind farm to power its 7 data centres in the country

View of Amazon’s wind farm in Texas, USA, Credit: Amazon website

View of Amazon’s wind farm in Texas, USA, Credit: Jordan Stead for Amazon

Japanese media house Nikkei has reported that Amazon has been discussing the possibility of powering its local data centres in the country with clean energy. The online retail giant has floated the proposition to source energy from renewable power plants. Since last week it has been negotiating a deal with Japanese power companies and trading houses to build an offshore wind power plant for its energy requirements. Amazon has been considering renewable energy as a sustainable, long-term option and will possibly consider enabling the construction of several renewable energy plants in the country.

In 2019, the Japanese government introduced a law allowing operators to utilise zones earmarked near the sea for offshore wind power development. These auctions, which began last year allow winning operators to spend the next 30 years developing and producing electricity from wind energy. An unnamed Japanese trading house has been exploring supplying power from wind energy to Amazon if it wins the government auction.

In addition to wind energy, Amazon has also been exploring the possibility of solar powered electricity. Nikkei reported that the company has been in talks with solar power producers to build photovoltaic plants in the country to meet its energy demands.

Japan has been actively encouraging tech giants such as Amazon and Google to build data centres on their territory. Amazon has seven data centres in the country. Data centres tend to consume large amounts of power because equipment constantly needs to be cooled down. Naturally, data centres will benefit from reduced electricity costs, possible only if they are powered by renewable sources of energy. Keeping this in mind, Amazon has decided that by 2025, all of its data centres around the world will be powered by renewable sources of energy.

Amazon has publicly pledged to produce net zero carbon emissions by 2040 and ten years before that, the company aims to power all its operations with renewable energy. Amazon began this week by raising $1 billion from its first sustainability bond which will be invested in renewable energy, clean transport, green infrastructure and affordable housing.

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