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Microsoft partners up with Brookfield to generate 10.5 gigawatts of renewable energy

Microsoft has entered into an agreement with Brookfield to develop approximately 10.5 gigawatts of new renewable electricity projects. The companies will build new wind and solar farms, primarily in the U.S. and Europe, between 2026 and 2030. To put the numbers into perspective, 10.5GW of energy is equivalent to powering about 1.8 million homes.

According to the Financial Times, the addition of 10.5GW of new capacity would require an investment exceeding $10 billion, based on recent industry trends.

The partnership helps Microsoft move a step forward in reducing its carbon footprint and supporting the global transition to a low-carbon economy. The Redmond giant aims to power 100% of its data centers and buildings with renewable energy by 2025.

Brookfield is one of the world's largest renewable power developers and has a significant portfolio of wind and solar projects across North America, Europe, and Asia. The company has been actively expanding its renewable energy business through acquisitions and partnerships, in addition to its partnership with Microsoft. The energy company acquired UK's Banks Group in 2023 and U.S.-based energy developer Urban Grid in 2022.

The surge in the use of generative AI and cloud computing has also surged the power consumption in data centers worldwide. According to the International Energy Agency (PDF), data centers worldwide could surpass 1,000 terawatt-hours of electricity consumption by 2026, which is more than double the levels recorded in 2022. This surge in energy usage is roughly equivalent to the total electricity consumption of Japan. This is why it is essential to build renewable energy sources to keep up with the increasing demand for energy.

Earlier today, Microsoft also announced its plans to build new data centers in Thailand and Indonesia to cater to the increasing demand for data centers across the globe. Amazon and Google have also announced plans to build data centers to expand their cloud operations.

Source: Financial Times via Reuters

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