Let's Work Together
Are you looking to relocate your existing business or searching for a great location for a new business? You've come to the right place. Locating your business in the Quincy Port District will benefit you and your business(es) in many ways. Contact us today to see how we work togther to make it happen.
April 21, 2012
By Ryan Lancaster,
QUINCY - A report issued by Greenpeace this week holds Quincy up as a relatively 'green' option for technology companies looking to place data centers.
The 52-page report, titled "How Clean Is Your Cloud," analyzed the energy policies and data center operations of leading technology companies such as Apple, Yahoo!, Microsoft and Dell, all of which store vast amounts of information used in cloud computing.
With some exceptions, the report says, most tech companies are failing to adopt clean energy practices and are still reliant on energy sources such as coal-fired power plants to run their power-hungry data centers.
Speaking to the Seattle Times, Greenpeace senior policy analyst Gary Cook, who is the report's author, said Quincy is "a good place to go," pointing to the area's access to hydropower via Grant County PUD.
Quincy currently has several data centers, including those operated by Yahoo!, Dell and Microsoft.
Yahoo! and Dell ranked highest in the report among the 14 firms listed on a "clean energy index" - both scored in the 56 percent range - but Microsoft was in the bottom five companies, with a score of about 14 percent.
Greenpeace lauded Yahoo! for "prioritizing access to renewable energy in their cloud expansion, and (becoming) more active in supporting policies to drive greater renewable energy investment."
Dell was given a "C" rating for infrastructure siting, but the company did get points for some recent investments, including its data center in Quincy, which the report said "showcases a preference for renewable energy."
Greenpeace suggested Dell should announce a preference for renewable energy to better clarify its policy to various utilities and countries vying for its business.
Microsoft, meanwhile, was chided for not having a "stated or consistent" data center siting policy that gives preference to renewable energy sources. Although Microsoft shows progress in some areas, such as the expansion of the Quincy site, the company is also expanding its data center infrastructure in Virginia, which is heavily reliant on coal and nuclear power, according to the report.
The report details how parts of Washington and Oregon have earned the nickname of the "Silicon Forest" due to the high concentration of tech companies in the region. Washington, and Grant County in particular, scored points for having a large amount of hydropower, while eastern Oregon was rebuked for importing about 60 percent of its energy from coal plants outside the state through the power company PacifiCorp.
Facebook located its first data center in Prineville, Oregon, and Apple has reportedly opted to invest its second iCloud data center there as well.
"As cloud companies look to further expand in this region, much more careful attention must be paid to the overall electricity ecosystem, and where the supply of electricity to meet additional demand will come from," the report states. "Without further investment in renewable energy to ensure the demand from cloud infrastructure is being matched with adequate additional renewable energy capacity, cloud companies could outstrip local supply, resulting in the further importing of coal power from PacifiCorp and others outside the region, instead of making the rest of the surrounding grid greener."