On Tuesday, Google signed a 24/7 power supply agreement with Engie to bring online 140 megawatts of carbon-free energy to its operations in Germany. Engie, a French multinational energy company specializing in decarbonization, is tasked with making Google’s German facilities “nearly 80% carbon-free by 2022 when measured on an hourly basis.” Google and Engie previously partnered on renewable energy projects in Belgium and the Netherlands beginning in 2019.
Google stated that the project “will help our customers — such as BMG, Delivery Hero, and Deutsche Bank — adapt to new requirements, new opportunities and new ways of working,” adding that its clients will benefit from “faster access to secure infrastructure, smart analytics tools and an open platform.” Deutsche Bank’s Chief Technology, Data and Innovation Officer welcomed the development, which he stated “will enable us to deliver additional resilience and performance for our German client base.”
The project centers on two new cloud facilities in Hanau and Berlin along with a new 39-megawatt solar photovoltaic system and 22 wind parks. Engie stated that Google is the first company in Europe to “guarantee carbon-free power supply 24/7…from solar and wind generation.” Engie will also provide Google with “sourcing of residual supply, balancing pool management and grid management,” among other services.
The partnership is one piece of Google’s announced $1.2 billion investment in digital infrastructure and clean energy in Germany. Last September, Google committed to powering 100% of its offices, data centers, and cloud regions worldwide with renewable energy by 2030.
Since 2017, Google has matched its annual electricity consumption with renewable energy purchases. This project marks a concrete step in Google’s larger effort to “shift away from a net-zero model of ‘emit and compensate’ and instead target ‘absolute zero.’”