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August 10, 2021

Microsoft to purchase clean energy from Ørsted solar facility in Texas

Ørsted’s Old 300 Solar Centre covers more than 2,800 acres and is being built with a $400m investment.

Microsoft has signed an agreement with Danish energy company Ørsted to buy renewable energy from Old 300, its 430MWAC solar energy centre currently in development.

Located in Fort Bend County, Texas, the solar energy centre is expected to come online in the second quarter of next year.

Microsoft Renewable Energy senior director Adrian Anderson said: “On our journey to 100% renewable energy, we recognise that innovation and collaboration are fundamental in how we fight against climate change.

“We’re grateful for our collaboration with Ørsted to deliver renewable energy in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) and look forward to continued progress towards a net-zero carbon future.”

The Old 300 Solar Centre is a $400m project spread over 2,800 acres of privately owned land near the city of Needville.

It is expected to benefit local landowners, schools and other community services over the coming years in the form of lease payments and property taxes.

Ørsted Onshore senior vice-president and chief commercial officer Vishal Kapadia said: “Microsoft has ambitious sustainability objectives for their Scope I, II and III emissions and we’re thrilled to support their targets.

“Given the strong alignment in focus on emission reductions between our two organisations, I’m excited about our continued collaboration.”

Last September, BP agreed to supply Microsoft with renewable energy to help the tech giant meet its 2025 ‎renewable energy goals.

In return, Microsoft granted BP access to its Azure Cloud services for digital twin production, data analytics, security and other digital purposes.

The two companies also pledged to work as strategic partners to help advance digital transformation ‎in energy systems and progress towards net-zero carbon goals.

Earlier this month, Ørsted reported that it had completed the Western Trail Wind Farm, a 367MW onshore wind project in Texas.

Located in Wilbarger and Baylor counties, the wind farm features 130 wind turbines and is the company’s largest onshore wind project to date.

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