Publishing Date: May 09, 2022

Datacentres for better security

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PRESS RELEASE: The CCGreen ‘Ecopark’ will house the first carbon neutral data centre in Europe and will have a sustainable artificial lake to cool its servers, among other innovations.

“This is the most important news for the city since its declaration as a World Heritage Site,” said Luis Salaya, mayor of Cáceres, about CCGreen on the day of the project's presentation.

A “data ecopark”, a sustainable data centre, a carbon neutral data centre -the first in Europe- that will put Extremadura at the forefront of technology and also of sustainability.

This is how they define a project that will resort to different solutions to achieve carbon neutrality, such as the construction of an artificial lake and two photovoltaic plants -one for self-consumption of the data centre and to supply additional renewable energy-. And it is that, no matter how much cloud is talked about, a search on Google or a simple message on WhatsApp spend fossil energy -0.3 watts per hour of electricity the first, four the second.

To alleviate this contamination, Ingenostrum, Statkraft and Alfa Laval have come together so that Cáceres, ideal due to its position – Spain is a crucial node of data centres and the immense global interconnected communications network -, size and cultural and leisure attractiveness whoever hosts CCGreen.

In total, an investment of 1,300 million euros is planned over several phases, which will take place from this year until 2030. Some 100 million will be dedicated to urbanisation and connections, up to 400 million in renewable generation and storage, and another 800 million euros in the construction of an eco-sustainable data centre campus. This would be connected to the fibre optic maritime connection that unites Europe with America through Bilbao and Sines (Portugal).


Innovations and perspectives

Santiago Rodríguez, CEO of Ingenostrum, explained in the presentation that Extremadura began as a leader in renewables, and continues to be, since it is the region that injects the most renewables each year.

“Renewables leave jobs, optimism in the towns and an injection of morale. Extremadura is the best place in southern Europe to carry out renewable projects, that is why we chose it. Cheap energy, water and territory. And on top of that, it just so happened that the large fibre optic networks pass through”.

This first phase of CCGreen – the start of works is scheduled for October 2023 and the end of the data centre works will be, predictably, in December 2024 – they will be carbon neutral data centres, which is the great novelty of the project.

It is a very unique circular economy initiative because they will use the effluent from the wastewater treatment plant in Cáceres -called Edar de El Marco-, and will pump it in solar time, a self-consumption, to fill an artificial lake that will serve for the building cooling. And, to further complete the circular economy of the initiative, the heat left over from these buildings will be used to air-condition seven office buildings for ICT companies, which are also very important for the development of the region, since, as Rodríguez himself assured, “we have a very high demand for ICT companies”.

CCGreen also states that one of its objectives is for youth to be “motivated” and to be trained in these technologies so that they can work in the region -they will employ up to 1,200 people in labour and contemplate the creation of up to 2,500 jobs.

“We are also going to leave space, in case they want to start pilot projects and initiatives in Cáceres, and then we are going to continue in later phases trying to put in place a large thermoelectric synchronous storage project,” assured Rodríguez.


Cáceres as a pole of attraction

As the mayor of Cáceres reiterated, this is a very important project for the city. “It is the most important thing that has happened to us in decades because it lays the foundations for an industrial development that our city has had very slightly throughout history. In addition, it consolidates a city model based on sustainable development and ratifies the hypothesis that the city's brand positioning as a green city and its commitment to sustainability can provide not only benefits for health and the environment, but also it can attract economic, business benefits that translate into employment and investment, which was one of the objectives of all this”.


And, finally, he declared: “CCGreen has ratified a second thing, which is more important, and that is that Cáceres is friendly to investors who come to make the city grow. That allow sustainable development to be reached a little earlier than other cities, but that, without a doubt, will reach the rest of Europe”.


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