Photo: file photo
Officials from Pacific Power, Facebook, Crook County and the City of Prineville joined Oregon Governor Kate Brown on Wednesday to announce that Facebook’s Prineville Data Center will be supported by 100 percent renewable energy from new solar developments. This collaboration helps fuel Prineville’s growing data center industry, supports the city’s economic growth, and brings new cost-effective resources onto Pacific Power’s system while fulfilling Facebook’s long-term sustainability goals.
The Pacific Power and Facebook partnership will result in 437 megawatts of new solar developments, including two projects totaling 100 megawatts in the Prineville area. The joint effort puts Oregon and the City of Prineville at the center of a solution that both supports development of new renewable resources and provides economic development benefits for the state and local community.
“This partnership bolsters Prineville’s 21st century model for a small-town,” Governor Brown said. “With projects like these, we continue to demonstrate that Oregon is ready for the clean energy economy of the future.”
For Facebook, leveraging renewable resources to power its data centers and finding strong partners to help develop these solutions, have been a priority.
“Our work with Pacific Power to develop new solar resources represents a significant milestone for our hyper-efficient Prineville Data Center. We are committed to supporting 100% renewable energy, and we are thrilled to have found a solution for our first data center,” said Peter Freed, Facebook’s energy strategy manager. “We are proud to be a part of the Prineville community, and look forward to a continued partnership with the city and the state of Oregon.”
Since 2011, when Facebook opened the doors to its first data center in Prineville, the unemployment rate has decreased from 17 percent to 6.5 percent today. Along with job growth, stronger infrastructure has come to the area, including new roads, parks and an elementary school. Education benefits have come from grants, including support from Facebook, and upgrades to school curriculums, including more STEM education opportunities.
“We are expanding from our timber roots to a future with greater business diversity and a workforce with broader skills,” said Prineville Mayor Betty Jean Roppe. “It is through contributions and support from organizations like Facebook and Pacific Power, that Prineville is growing new jobs and strengthening our schools with programs that meet the skills needs of tomorrow. This inspires new paths and opportunities for future generations, right here in town.”
As a company serving Oregon’s rural communities, Pacific Power seeks out opportunities to power innovation and ideas that bring strength to the cities and customers it serves and provide support for the future.
“At Pacific Power, we believe in the power of partnership. As a 100-year company with a long history of serving smaller communities across Oregon, we believe progress is best achieved when business and community come together,” said Stefan Bird, president and CEO of Pacific Power. “We view this partnership as a way for Facebook to meet its sustainability goals and for Prineville and its neighboring Central Oregon communities to grow and thrive, while delivering cost-effective resources to all of our customers.”
Source: Pacific Power