The data centre – set for construction in Clonee, County Meath – will be designed as part of the Open Compute Project, an industry-wide coalition of companies dedicated to creating energy via cost-efficient infrastructure.

All components found in the centre, including racks and servers will be designed from scratch and then shared as an open source to others in the coalition.

A statement from Facebook read: “Our data center in Clonee will be powered by 100% renewable energy, thanks to Ireland’s robust wind resources. This will help us reach our goal of powering 50% of our infrastructure with clean and renewable energy by the end of 2018.”

The centre in Ireland – where Facebook’s headquarters is based – will be the second energy and cost efficient data centre that Facebook owns in Europe – following on from the Luleå data centre in Sweden.

An apple a day

Facebook isn’t the only major tech corporation that is using Ireland as a renewables hotspot. Apple recently announced a $1.7bn plan to build two giant data centres in Europe –one in Ireland and the other in Denmark – both powered by 100% renewable energy.

Apple has also invested £1m in R&D funding in order to promote and trial innovative wave energy projects off the country’s coast.

Tech giants have been increasingly intent on sourcing green energy in recent years, as experts have predicted that the amount of energy consumed by data centres will treble in the next decade.

In response, Google has announced it will convert an old coal-fired power plant in rural Alabama into a data centre powered by renewable power, while US financial services firm Bloomberg announced a deal to power 5% of its main New York data centre through a 2.9MW solar plant.

Facebook has been viewed as a Silicon Valley pioneer in regards to sustainability and you can read about the five ways the company is promoting sustainability here.

Matt Mace

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