Google invests $75 million in Iowa wind farm

Google has sunk $75m into a 50MW wind farm in Iowa. Google’s investments in renewable energy now exceed $990 million.

The Iowa wind farm — called the Rippey Wind Farm and located in Greene County — is owned by RPM Access and its 20 wind turbines are already online.

Google is investing $75 million in an Iowa wind farm as part of its effort to encourage development of cleaner energy sources.

The deal announced Thursday gives Google Inc. a stake in the Rippey Wind Farm in Greene County, Iowa. RPM Access LLC is the primary owner.

Google makes US$75m investment in Iowa wind farm

Google makes US$75m investment in Iowa wind farm


The wind farm is located about 130 miles northeast of Council Bluffs, Iowa, which is home to one of the eight data centers that power Google’s Internet search engine and other services.

The Iowa data center won’t be getting power from the wind farm.

Nick Coons and Steffi Russell-Egbert, members of Google's investment team, pictured visiting the Rippey project in Iowa in October

Nick Coons and Steffi Russell-Egbert, members of Google’s investment team, visit the Rippey project in Iowa in October. Image via Google

The high electricity demand of Google’s massive data centers is one of the reasons the company backs energy projects that cause less pollution than traditional power plants.

Axel Martinez, head of Capital Markets at Google, said this latest wind-farm investment will bring Google’s investment to the renewable energy sector to more than US$990m.

The Internet search giant said it wants to use more renewable energy for its data centers and plans to have about one third of its data centers being powered by clean energy.

Google, based in Mountain View, California, created in June last year a 280-million-dollar fund with SolarCity, an American home solar energy designing and installing company, and the investment is said to be Google’s largest of the kind in clean power to date.

The search giant also pumped another 100 million dollars in the world’s largest wind farm based in the U.S. state of Oregon in April last year, while unveiling a new plan in September to buy clean energy to directly power one of its data centers.