On December 11, The Pegasus Group Holdings,[i] of Henderson, NV announced a $5.2 billion dollar expansion, code name Firefly, of its proposed solar powered data facility, code-name The Hive, near Kingman, Mohave County, AZ.
In June, the group and its wholly owned subsidiary, Plus Minus Power (PMP), [ii] broke ground eventually, amounting to 1,500 acres of land to support its $3 billion investment in a 340 Megawatt solar-powered operation. When completed the facility will be the largest renewable energy data center in the United States. The operation is located slightly north of the 650-megawatt gas-powered Griffith Energy plant.
Dan Briggs, President and CEO of Pegasus said Mohave County is an ideal place to conduct business and he complimented Mohave County officials for their assistance and cooperation.
Jay Bloom, Executive Chairman & Founding Partner of Pegasus Group Holdings’ and an inventor said they chose Mohave County for its abundant sunshine, quality labor force, and the overwhelming support of Supervisor Jean Bishop and the Mohave County Board of Supervisors. “The tremendous sense of welcome and cooperation by the local government has allowed us to accelerate the launch of our project which will be operational by the end of 2019,” said Bloom. Bloom reminded those attending the grand opening that “340 megawatts represents 165 metric tons of carbon that are now coming out of the air. “We are going to be running approximately 165,000 servers,” he said.
“Those servers consume a lot of electricity. And that electricity would otherwise be coming from coal, or oil, or natural gas. Well, now they’re coming from sunlight.” Bloom, elaborated about the data center’s long-term environmental benefits, “By moving 340 megawatts off the grid, we are reducing carbon by the equivalent of 308,143 cars. It’s the same as taking 308,143 cars off the road as far as carbon emissions reduction.”
Bloom said, “A little less than a year ago, we were out trying to find a site that would be appropriate for this project. We looked all over the world and we settled here. We settled here because of the climate and because of the opportunities with land availability. And what we found is so much more.” He continued, “The level of support we have received from the local and state government has been tremendous and that was a big factor here in continuing to expand here within the county.
Several data driven companies are moving towards renewable energy to run their servers. According to an article in Laserfiche, companies such as Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, and Microsoft, have the money to apply to such projects, and typically have corporate cultures where environmental issues are of high importance to their employees and stockholders.
The Laserfich author report that Facebook intends to use renewable energy for all its data centers, powering them with wind and cooling them with air. Microsoft earlier started operating one of its data centers completely off the grid, running on methane. In 2013, Apple wrote in its blog that it powered all its data centers with 100 percent renewable energy and reached 94 percent renewable energy usage across its corporate campuses and data centers. The company had been singled out by Greenpeace in 2011 for its reliance on fossil fuels.
Apple’s Newark, California, data center largely draws its power from wind. Its Prineville, Oregon, data center relies on the wind but plans to switch mainly to hydroelectric power using an innovative plan that draws power from water temporarily diverted from irrigation canals. Apple also is a customer of Bloom boxes, a biogas fuel cell technology. But Apple’s marquee renewable is solar.”
Google uses Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs). These contracts (typically 20 years) provide developers with a solid commitment to helping them funds needed to finance new clean energy facilities. In exchange, Google obtains clean energy at competitive prices as well as renewable energy certificates (RECs) to help reduce our carbon footprint.
[i] Pegasus Group Holdings owns and operates renewable energy based hyperscale data center ecosystems for enterprise colocation, differentiated multi-cloud, industry-leading telecommunications solutions, disaster recovery services and off-site data storage solutions for a variety of corporate clients. Tenants may include cryptocurrency miners, medical companies providing human genome mapping sequencing, movie studies rendering 3D feature films, as well as disaster recovery and data storage services. Any remaining power can be transferred into the national or local power grids.
[ii] Plus Minus Power creates, manages, maintains and monetizes renewable energy. PMP owns and builds micro grids for storage solutions and energy efficiencies to meet power needs.