Amazon Starts Building 208 MW Wind Farm In North Carolina

Amazon today announced that it will build a 208 MW wind farm in North Carolina to power its current and future AWS data centers. The so-called Amazon Wind Farm US East — likely because its power will mostly be used for Amazon’s US East region data centers in Virginia — will be built and operated by Iberdrola Renewables.

The plan is for the new wind farm, which is the company’s largest to date, to start operating in December 2016. Amazon expects that the site will ultimately generate about 670,000 megawatt hours annually. The company didn’t say how much money it will invest in this new site, though.

It’s worth noting that Amazon is also working on an 80 megawatt solar farm in Virginia, which is scheduled to go online in October 2016.

Today’s announcement also follows a similar investment in a 150 megawatt Indiana wind farm earlier this year. The company has repeatedly stated that it aims “to achieve 100 percent renewable energy usage for the global AWS infrastructure footprint” in the long term. With this new wind farm, it’s getting quite a bit closer to this goal.

“This agreement, and those previously in place, puts AWS on track to surpass our goal of 40 percent renewable energy globally by the end of 2016,” said Jerry Hunter, Vice President of Infrastructure at Amazon Web Services, in today’s announcement. “We’re far from being done. We’ll continue pursuing projects that deliver clean energy to the various energy grids that serve AWS data centers, we’ll continue working with our power providers to increase their renewable energy quotient, and we’ll continue to strongly encourage our partners in government to extend the tax incentives that make it more viable for renewable projects to get off the ground.”

Once this current slew of projects wraps up, Amazon’s renewable energy projects will be able to deliver about 1.3 million megawatt hours — enough to power about 122,000 homes.