Technology giant Microsoft announced last Thursday a new wind energy agreement in the Netherlands developed by Dutch-based wind farm developer Eneco, wherein Microsoft will purchase 90 megawatts (MW) from the mammoth 731.5 MW Borssele III/IV offshore wind farms.
Microsoft signed a 15-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) from Eneco for 90 MW of electricity generated from the Borssele III/IV offshore wind farms, which is to begin in 2022. This marks Microsoft’s second purchase of wind energy in the Netherlands in a year, bringing its total wind energy purchases in the Netherlands up to 270 MW — one of the largest corporate renewable energy portfolios in the country. It is also the company’s 14th renewable energy PPA, bringing its global portfolio to more than 1.5 gigawatts (GW).
“Tech companies are facing the challenge to reduce their carbon footprints, mostly due to the vast energy consumption of their datacenters,” said Hans Peters, chief customer officer, Eneco. “A global frontrunner like Microsoft does not see this as a challenge, but as an opportunity to boost the energy transition. We are proud we can help them switch to a sustainable, smart and clean energy supply in the Netherlands. As a result, Microsoft is creating local opportunity, growth and impact while enabling Eneco to continue to invest in large-scale renewable energy projects like Borssele III/IV.”
“Our purchasing of renewable energy helps improve the sustainability of our operations and local grids,” added Brian Janous, general manager, Energy and Sustainability, Microsoft. “This agreement is our 14th renewable energy power purchase agreement and brings our total clean energy portfolio to more than 1.5 GW. The electricity generated will help support the continued long-term growth of Microsoft cloud services delivered from the Netherlands, which is one of 54 Azure regions announced and part of one of the largest and most innovative cloud infrastructures in the world.”
The electricity will be generated by the 731.5 MW Borssele III/IV offshore wind farm set to be built in the Dutch North Sea and which reached financial close in August of 2018. The project is being developed by the Blauwwind Consortium, made up of Partners Group (on behalf of its clients) (45%), British–Dutch multinational oil and gas company Royal Shell (20%), European clean energy company Diamond Generating Europe (DGE) (15%), Dutch energy group Eneco Group (10%), and Dutch contracting company Van Oord (10%). Further, Shell and Eneco Group have both signed 15-year PPAs for 50% each of the power generated.