Apple on Monday announced plans to pour €1.7 billion, or approximately $1.92 billion, into new data centers in Ireland and Denmark, its biggest European projects to date. One will be located in County Galway’s Athenry in Ireland and the other in Denmark’s central Jutland.
In line with Apple’s commitment to clean energy, each 166,000-square-meter data center will be powered by 100 percent renewable energy sources “from day one”. The upcoming facilities are expected to begin operations in 2017 and will support Apple’s online services for customers in Europe, including the iTunes Store, App Store, iMessage, Maps and Siri.
The Denmark facility, located adjacent to one of Denmark’s largest electrical substations, will capture excess heat from equipment inside the facility and conduct it into the district heating system to help warm homes in the neighboring community.
For the Irish project, the company will recover land previously used for growing and harvesting non-native trees and restore native trees to Derrydonnell Forest.
“The project will also provide an outdoor education space for local schools, as well as a walking trail for the community,” notes the media release.
“We are grateful for Apple’s continued success in Europe and proud that our investment supports communities across the continent,” said CEO Tim Cook.
“This significant new investment represents Apple’s biggest project in Europe to date. We’re thrilled to be expanding our operations, creating hundreds of local jobs and introducing some of our most advanced green building designs yet.”
Additional tidbits from Apple’s press release:
- The company supports nearly 672,000 European jobs, of which 530,000 jobs directly related to the development of iOS apps.
- Since the App Store’s debut in 2008, developers across Europe have earned more than €6.6 billion, or $7.46 billion, through the worldwide sale of apps.
- Apple now directly employs 18,300 people across 19 European countries.
- The company has added over 2,000 jobs in Europe in the last 12 months alone.
- Last year, they spent more than €7.8 billion, or approximately $8.82 billion, with European companies and suppliers helping build Apple products and support operations around the world.
The upcoming data centers will have the lowest environmental impact yet for an Apple data centre, said the Cupertino firm.
“We believe that innovation is about leaving the world better than we found it, and that the time for tackling climate change is now,” said Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of Environmental Initiatives.
“We’re excited to spur green industry growth in Ireland and Denmark and develop energy systems that take advantage of their strong wind resources. Our commitment to environmental responsibility is good for the planet, good for our business and good for the European economy.”
The company has pledged to partner with local companies across Europe on additional renewable energy projects from wind or other sources to provide power in the future.