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Two new Apple data centres to run on renewables

Apple has announced plans to build two large data storage centers in Europe: one in Ireland and the other in Denmark. The $1.9 billion (€1.7 billion) investment, Apple’s largest ever in Europe, will help the company power many of its popular online services for its European customers, which include the iTunes store, App store, iMessage, Maps, and Siri. The data storage centers will officially go online in 2017.

The investment is expected to be split equally between both countries, with the Irish government having recently confirmed €850 million to be spent in Ireland. Located in Athenry, Ireland, and Viborg, Denmark, the facilities would each cover approximately 166,000 square meters, making them among the largest storage centers in the world. The data centers would both be powered entirely by wind energy and create hundreds of jobs for local economies. The cooler climates in both countries are expected to help the company save on equipment-cooling costs. The facility in Ireland would serve as Apple’s European headquarters.

The new data storage centers are intended to meet what is expected to be a massive increase in demand for remote data storage, as consumers and businesses continue to rely more heavily on Cloud-based technology. They also reaffirm Apple’s commitment over the past several years to protecting customer privacy. With these new facilities, Apple can more easily adapt to stricter data protection rules adopted by many European countries in the wake of the National Security Agency (NSA) scandal in 2013. Providers like Apple have been pressured by regulators over the last 12 months to store more of their customer information local data storage facilities.

In addition to privacy and legal issues, the locations of data storage centers are often influenced heavily by factors such as electricity prices and low network latency. Electricity prices in Denmark rank among the lowest in Europe; Ireland’s fall roughly in line with the EU average.

© 2015 Solar Choice Pty Ltd