Bord na Móna has signed an agreement with web services provider Amazon to provide the large energy user with 105MW of renewable energy to power data centres from Bord na Móna sites in the midlands.

The initiative is the first agreement signed under Bord na Móna’s plans to establish an eco energy park geared towards supplying large-scale industrial sites with renewable energy.

The park is to cover approximately 3,000ha of Bord na Móna’s land bank and has been pitched as helping to improve energy security and help the State reach its aim of economy-wide net zero by 2050.

The energy purchase agreement with Amazon remains subject to regulatory and planning consent, with the multinational claiming that it plans on powering all of its Irish operations with renewable power by 2025.

Amazon is to invest in “up to 800MW of new renewable energy projects” in Ireland under the agreement.

Powering industry

Minister for the Environment Eamon Ryan commented that the collaboration serves as an example for energy providers and large energy users working together to reduce emissions.

“Sectors including manufacturing, pharmaceutical, agri food and ICT all play an important role in Ireland’s economy and driving economic growth into the future,” Minister Ryan said.

“Projects like Bord na Móna’s eco energy park will be crucial in making these sectors of our economy sustainable in the long term, by co-locating renewable energy generation assets with large energy users.

“This announcement marks an important step in decarbonising large energy users in Ireland and is going to play a key role in helping Ireland to meet its carbon reduction targets for 2030 and achieve net zero emissions by 2050.”

Significant investment

Bord na Móna stated that the project represents a key element of the agency’s 5GW renewable energy infrastructure pipeline.

“As one of Ireland’s leading renewable energy providers, we are committed to delivering innovative and sustainable ways for leading businesses across a range of sectors to decarbonise their operations,” its chief executive Tom Donnellan said.

“We are investing significantly in our eco energy park offering in the midlands, which will provide associated benefits for the area that will positively impact employment, the environment, infrastructure, communities, and local businesses.

“We can co-locate these large companies with our renewable energy assets to offer a sustainable pathway to grid capacity that is backed up with flexible technology power as required.”