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As Microsoft embraces a more thoughtful approach to powering the cloud, we’re looking at how we can reinvent the datacenter to be more efficient and use more sustainable energy sources. Very few cities have embraced the clean energy economy like San Antonio and its mayor, Julian Castro. In addition, The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) has demonstrated its commitment to a more sustainable energy future by establishing The Texas Sustainable Energy Research Institute (SERI) under the leadership of Dr. Les Shephard, formerly of Sandia National Lab. With one of our largest datacenters located in San Antonio, we saw an opportunity to work with the city’s renewable energy community on the role of datacenters in accelerating the growth of clean energy.
Microsoft is once again partnering with others to further fuel cell innovations, with the goal of developing a very efficient, low-cost fuel cell system. Microsoft, Redox Power Systems LLC, the University of Maryland and Trans-Tech Inc. were recently awarded $5 million by the Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E) to develop transformational fuel cells.
Microsoft is committed to reducing our environmental footprint, and over the past two years we continue to meet our goal of becoming carbon neutral. Our approach to meeting that goal, however, continues to evolve. Today, we are announcing another move to make our operations more environmentally sustainable by signing a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA) for wind energy in Illinois that will be funded in part by proceeds from Microsoft’s carbon fee.
By now, it is likely common knowledge that driving accountability for carbon emissions is an important part of Microsoft’s commitment to carbon neutrality (or visit past blog posts for a refresher on our carbon fee program, including our Carbon Fee Playbook). Fortunately for our planet, carbon accountability is getting more attention both in the media and with companies and individuals who are able to help make a difference, and we are excited to play a part in increasing awareness around this issue. Recently, the Climate Disclosure Project (CDP) released a whitepaper featuring Rob Bernard and other thought leaders that focused on how corporations use carbon prices.
Late last week the Climate Disclosure Project (CDP) released a report outlining 29 companies, across various industries that have voluntarily incorporated an internal carbon price as a strategic planning tool. This report detailed organizations from oil companies to tech giants, entertainment companies and more that are holding themselves accountable for the carbon pollution released into the environment as a result of daily operations. Today, we are taking our experiences and learnings to the masses and are pleased to release