Microsoft Data Centers heat homes in Finland, reducing carbon emissions

Fortum said its investment in capturing heat from data centers is estimated at 200 million euros.


Finnish company Fortum said on Thursday it would use the waste heat from two new Microsoft data centers to heat homes and businesses in and around the capital Helsinki, while reducing carbon emissions.

Microsoft, meanwhile, announced plans to build renewable energy data centers so that their location could recycle heat generated by cooling computer servers.

District heating is widely used in Finland, pumping hot water through pre-insulated underground pipes, and has traditionally relied on fossil fuel sources.

Fortum uses a 900-kilometer underground pipeline system that serves 250,000 users in the Helsinki metropolitan area. When completed, the data centers will account for 40% of the system’s heat supply, the two companies said.

Fortum said the investment in heat capture from data centers is estimated at 200 million euros ($ 221 million), which is expected to reduce 400,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year.

Microsoft did not say how much it would invest in the centers.

However, he initially estimated that he would need 400-500 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of renewable energy, and said it was comparable to other local industries, such as the paper or pulp mill.

Microsoft plans to buy electricity through one or more long-term power purchase agreements (PPPs), even though no supplier has yet been selected, the company told Reuters.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and has been published from a union feed.)


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