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Apple's North Carolina data center  (Source: allnewsmac.com)
Apple's report also details its electricity consumption and green efforts over the last year

Apple has made some considerable green contributions to the renewable energy effort recently, including the company's Maiden, North Carolina data center, which will feature the U.S.' largest end user-owned, onsite solar array.

According to Apple's 2012 Facilities Report and Environmental Update, which describes the company's energy savings and environmental footprint in Apple stores, data centers and R&D buildings, solar power will become a huge part of its Maiden, North Carolina data center. In fact, Apple is out to build the largest end user-owned solar array in the nation.

The onsite solar array surrounding the facility will be approximately 100 acres. It will be a 20-megawatt facility that will generate about 42 million kWh of clean energy on an annual basis. Next to it will be the largest non-utility fuel cell installation in the U.S. as well, which will be a 5-megawatt facility generating 40 million kWh of 24x7 baseload of renewable energy annually.

The data center has already received some attention from the U.S. Green Building Council, which gave it LEED Platinum certification. Apple also mentioned that no other data center of its size has been awarded such a high level of LEED certification.

In addition to the Maiden, North Carolina data center, Apple has been making other green efforts to reduce its negative environmental impact. In 2011 alone, Apple consumed 493 million kWh of electricity as well as 3 million therms of natural gas. According to the report, Apple used renewable energy efforts to escape about 30 million kilograms of CO2e emissions. It has also managed to convert 54 million kWh of consumption annually to renewable energy in facilities around the world.

Apple seems to be joining the likes of other tech giants like Google, which has invested in many renewable energy initiatives such as a $75 million residential solar panel venture, the world's largest wind farm, and a $168 million investment in the Ivanpah solar electric generating system.

In December 2011, Apple patent applications described two new fuel cell-powered mobile device patents called "Fuel Cell System to Power a Portable Computing Device" and "Fuel Cell System Coupled to a Portable Computing Device."

Source: 9 to 5 Mac



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Coldfriction is right.
By zodiacfml on 2/21/2012 10:48:16 PM , Rating: 2
Both are right. It's just they view the problem differently. Coldfriction is on the philosophical or science side that we are not limited as long there is energy. A heard somewhere that a society's sophistication can be based on how much energy it can harness.

Realistically or looking at the problem at present, we are pretty limited indeed in terms of economics and politics. There's still plenty of oil only that we can't get that cheaply. It's also easy to build more nuclear plants for cheap energy and so is the hindrances to it.




RE: Coldfriction is right.
By testerguy on 2/22/2012 3:12:39 AM , Rating: 2
Taking the fact that there 'is energy' (something which has always and will always be true) as the only consideration, rather than considering the infrastructure and hardware (and the time to install said hardware) required to capture and effectively use said energy - is to miss a whole scientific field. As you said - a society's ability to harness energy, rather than there 'being' energy - is what is key. Renewable energy is an example of us harnessing more energy - and thus a key step which will possibly be required one day.

A world which does not move away from dependence on a depleting resource will descend into chaos - this is why there are global initiatives to utilise renewable energies. This chaos would obviously affect the economy - arguably arguments over oil already are - Iran is a good example.

As far as I see it, the original poster is simply advocating that we react now to a depleting resource, get ourselves prepared for the time 'after' oil (for example), so that we aren't hit hard by it when it happens. For me, that is indisputable.


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