Arlington company to provide carbon-free power for Google data centers

Arlington, Virginia-based AES Corp. has signed an agreement to supply electricity to power Google’s data centers in Virginia with carbon-free energy.

Financial terms of the 10-year supply contract weren’t disclosed, but AES said it will require about $600 million of investment and generate 1,200 jobs, both permanent and construction, in Virginia.

Google has stated its goal is for all of its operations worldwide to be 100% carbon-free by 2030.

Under the contract, AES will ensure that the energy powering Google’s Virginia data centers will be 90% carbon-free when measured on an hourly basis. AES will be the sole supplier of the data center’s carbon-free energy, and will source the power from wind, solar, hydro and battery storage resources.

AES says it has assembled a 500-megawatt portfolio of power supply from its own renewable energy projects and those of third-party developers with which it has contracted.

“Not only is this partnership with AES an important step towards achieving Google’s 24/7 carbon-free energy goal; it also lays a blueprint for other companies looking to decarbonize their own operations,” said Michael Terrell, director of energy at Google.

“Our hope is that this model can be replicated to accelerate the clean energy transition, both for companies and, eventually, for power grids.”

AES owns or operates power distribution plants in 15 countries. It expects to begin supplying Google’s Virginia data centers by the end of 2021.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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