Apple to collaborate on new solar and wind energy projects

Solar and wind energy projects - solar panels and a wind turbine

The tech giant is increasing access to green energy in the eastern United States.

Apple is teaming up with Swiss Re, Etsy and Akami to develop new solar and wind energy farms in the United States. The companies will collectively purchase energy from a wind farm in Illinois and a solar farm in Virginia.

Combined, both clean energy projects will produce enough energy to power 74,000 homes.

Together, the companies will purchase 165 MW from a solar photovoltaic (PV) power plant just outside of Fredericksburg, Virginia, and 125 MW from a wind farm near Chicago. Combined, these solar and wind energy projects will total to 290 MW, which is about equal to powering 74,000 homes across the eastern United States, reported edie.

The solar project will reportedly be developed by sPower and the wind farm will be developed by Geronimo Energy. Meanwhile, Apple, Swiss Re, Etsy and Akami will receive technical assistance from 3Degrees. The power that is generated from these green farms will be delivered to the electric grid that is covered by the PJM wholesale electric market.

The companies will be able to use the solar and wind energy that’s generated at competitive prices.

The new partnership gives Etsy, Swiss Re and Akami the opportunity to use solar and wind power at competitive prices and agreement terms. Previously, these companies had limited access to renewable resources in the PJM regions.

For instance, the renewable power projects are estimated to cover over 40% of the energy consumed by Akami’s US operations and over 20% of the cloud services firm’s global energy consumption.

These projects will also help e-commerce brand Etsy meet its goal to be powered by 100% renewable energy by 2020.

Additionally, Swiss Re, a Zurich-based reinsurance company, will also benefit from the projects by furthering its efforts to reduce its carbon footprint. The Swiss company has been a large supporter of renewable energy projects and sourced an estimated 84% of its energy needs from renewables in 2016.

“At Apple, we’re proud to power all of our operations around the world with 100% renewable energy,” said Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of environment, as quoted by edie.

Solar and wind energy projects - solar panels and a wind turbine“In the process, we’ve charted a course for other companies and organisations to purchase renewable energy and transition their own operations to greener power,” Jackson added.

The solar and wind energy farms are expected to be operational within the next two years.

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