Microsoft to partner with General Electric on renewable energy

Elizabeth Robinson
By Elizabeth Robinson on 11 October 2017
Microsoft to partner with General Electric on renewable energy

Microsoft and General Electric (GE) have joined forces on a new wind project in Ireland. The 15-year power purchase agreement (PPA) involves Microsoft purchasing 100% of the wind energy from the Tullahennel wind farm in County Kerry, Ireland.

“Microsoft is proud to be deepening our long history of investment and partnership in Ireland with this agreement,” said Christian Belady, general manager, Datacenter Strategy at Microsoft.

“Our investment will help bring new, clean energy to the Irish grid, and contains innovative elements that have the potential to grow the capacity, reliability and capability of the grid to incorporate new clean power sources like wind energy. And that is good for the environment, for Ireland and for our company.”

The wind farm will integrate GE’s Digital Wind farm technology, which makes renewable energy outputs more reliable. Digital models will ensure that the energy generation supplied can meet the predicted demand.

“Our agreement with Microsoft paves the road not only for more clean energy in Ireland, but more collaboration on PPAs enabled by new power players and wind turbine manufacturers around the globe,” said Andres Isaza, chief commercial officer of GE Renewable Energy. “Wind is now one of the most competitive sources of electricity on the market today and we’re excited to be partnering with Microsoft, a pioneer that is helping the industry grow and realise the advantages of scale.”

Microsoft is also acquiring an Irish energy supply license from GE, which will benefit both Microsoft and the Irish power grid, as it allows the company the flexibility to easily grow and invest in renewable energy in Ireland over time. Dublin-based energy trading company ElectroRoute will act as trading service provider for the supply company.

“ElectroRoute is delighted to work with Microsoft and GE to structure and manage the energy trading activities for the supply company,” said Ronan Doherty, chief executive at ElectroRoute. “The wind energy sector is particularly vibrant in Ireland at the moment, and we are seeing the emergence of an array of new structures and procurement approaches, which I feel will persist and grow into the future.”

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