Google: Google, Facebook and Microsoft Corp push back against big renewable project

Jun 13, 2022 | Posted by MadalineDunn

Google, Facebook, and Microsoft Corp., currently three of the world’s biggest corporate buyers of clean power, have voiced their opposition to a nearly $4-billion, Warren Buffett-backed renewable-energy project proposed in Iowa. According to the three giants, the project, which would be the largest complex of wind farms in the US, isn’t in the interest of locals or the three tech companies and will drive up electricity costs. 

The project was proposed by MidAmerican, based in Des Moines, Iowa, back in January, and it outlined its plan for 2,000MW of wind power, and 50MW of solar generation - which, if given approval, would be complete by late 2024. Currently, the company is fuelled largely by wind (58%), but it also derives 42% from coal, nuclear, and other sources. 

In an email to Bloomberg, Corina Standiford, a spokeswoman for Alphabet Inc.’s Google, said: “We have concerns that the current Wind Prime proposal is not in the energy customers’ best interest.” The company has also jointly filed its opposition with the Iowa Utilities Board, with Facebook. Microsoft has also joined the call. 

Reports have suggested that this move demonstrates the “increasing influence” that tech giants have on energy transition.

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