Facebook Parent Meta Is Opening a 100% Renewable Data Center Here

(Credit: Idaho Commerce)

by | Feb 22, 2022

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(Credit: Idaho Commerce)

The social media giant Facebook, which rebranded itself as Meta last October, has selected Kuna, Idaho, as the location of its newest data center. The facility, named the Meta Kuna Data Center, will be supported by 100% renewable energy from new resources connected to electric utility Idaho Power’s system.

Last December, Idaho Power unveiled its Clean Energy Your Way program, which offers homes and businesses various ways to support renewable energy. Participants can purchase Green-e® Energy certified renewable energy generated from a 50/50 blend of wind and solar projects or Renewable Energy Credits for large projects (750 mWh+) that support a customizable mix of local and national wind, solar, hydro or geothermal projects. Both a subscription option in the vein of a Power Purchase Agreement and a construction option to help finance new renewable power plants will soon be offered too. Meta will be the first customer to participate in the program.

Idaho is recognized as an ideal location for data centers given its low risk of natural disasters, energy prices that are among the lowest in the nation, and a stable and ready workforce. These factors, combined with Kuna’s access to infrastructure, renewable energy, and talent, sold Meta on the location. 

Work on the 960,000 square-foot facility is scheduled to begin in September 2022, with construction expected to continue through 2025. With an estimated investment of $800 million, the data center is projected to bring more than 1,200 jobs to Kuna during peak construction and 100 operational jobs. Meta is allocating approximately $50 million of this to construct a new water and sewer system for the city, which Kuna will own and operate.

Both Meta and Idaho Power have made clean power commitments in recent years. The latter, which already utilizes hydropower to supply about half of its customers’ electricity needs, plans to provide 100% renewable energy by 2045 via additional investments in wind and solar facilities. In 2018, Meta set the goal of supporting its global operations with 100% renewable energy by the end of 2020. Since achieving net-zero emissions throughout its own operations, Meta has set its sights on decarbonizing its value chain as well as constructing new renewable energy power plants to support its growing electricity needs. 

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