Microsoft signs its largest wind power investment with Pilot Hill Wind Project

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Microsoft has signed a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with EDF Renewable Energy for Pilot Hill wind project, announced the Microsoft blog.

Pilot Hill Wind Project having a 175 MW capacity is located near Chicago, Illinois and will consist of wind turbines supplied by General Electric (GE) and Vestas. The commercial operation is anticipated during the first quarter of 2015.

As disclosed by the blog, this is the second PPA of Microsoft, following the purchase of wind energy from the Keechi wind project in Texas in November.

According to the agreement, the EDF Renewable Energy will see Microsoft purchase up to 675,000 MWh of renewable energy from Pilot Hill Project each year, enough to meet the power needs of 70,000 homes.

The additional energy generated through the project will be supplied to Illinois electric grid. The overall amount of emissions from Microsoft facility operations will be reduced with this purchase of wind energy. Projects like Pilot Hill provide a non-polluting source of energy that displaces greenhouse gas emissions from conventional power, narrated the blog.

Besides, Microsoft’s commitment to green power is included in Global Public Policy Agenda extending to data-centers and offices. The Pilot Hill Wind Project is an initial drive to reduce the environmental footprint and to be carbon neutral. Microsoft is focused on transforming energy supply chain for cloud services from the power plant to the chip.

Ryan Pfaff, executive vice president, EDF Renewable Energy commented that participation of Microsoft in renewable energy generation points to a growing trend of ‘blue chip’ organization participating in direct energy production with a focus on reducing their carbon footprint.

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