STANDARD POWER TO BUILD BLOCKCHAIN DATA CENTRE AT NUCLEAR POWER PLANT
PRESS RELEASE: Standard Power is to build a massive blockchain data centre at a nuclear power plant in Pennsylvania.
A memorandum of understanding between Energy Harbor and Standard Power has been signed develop a large-scale carbon-free data infrastructure operation, and includes a 10-year agreement to purchase between 200 megawatts and 300 megawatts of nuclear power from a direct connection to Beaver Valley in Shippingport beginning in 2023. There's a potential for up to 900 megawatts of power to the Standard Power data centre in later phases.
The first phase of the arrangement between Energy Harbor and Standard Power will involve engineering and implementing of the data centre, which will be carbon free. Energy Harbor has already worked with Standard Power on a data centre in Conshocton, Ohio, that will use nuclear power from another Energy Harbor facility, Davis-Besse. Energy Harbor is aiming to create what it calls clean energy centres around its nuclear plants, including Beaver County, that will be a place for economic growth.
“This agreement and projects like the clean hydrogen pilot at our Davis-Besse Nuclear Station, demonstrate that clean energy infrastructure development near our nuclear facilities will create additional jobs and economic growth for our local communities,” said Energy Harbor President and CEO John Judge.
“We look forward to the culmination of these efforts as we pursue Clean Energy Center (CEC) projects at our nuclear facilities in Ohio and Pennsylvania.”
Standard Power CEO Maxim Serezhin said the deal ensures that it is using only carbon-free power in its operations. Some other data centres and bitcoin miners use natural gas or coal for their operations.
“Data infrastructure and the associated technology is energy intensive, and we recognise our responsibility to build a more environmentally sustainable future,” Serezhin said.
It's the second large-scale power agreement between Energy Harbor and a data centre or bitcoin mining company, deals that call for large amounts of electricity to power and cool the large-scale computers that are required for these intensive activities. Mawson Infrastructure Group is getting carbon-free power for its bitcoin mining operation at the former Allegheny Technologies steel plant in Midland, across the river and about a mile from Beaver Valley.
It's a turnaround for the 1.8-gigawatt Beaver Valley plant, which was formerly owned by First Energy Corp. (NYSE: FE) and FirstEnergy Solutions and had been slated for deactivation in 2021 after a difficult landscape for nuclear power. That has been looking up in recent years after the shift toward ESG and more carbon-free power, which includes nuclear as well as renewables. Energy Harbor had also said that Pennsylvania's pending entry into the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative was also helping to make the case for nuclear power. Energy Harbor was the name of the company that owned the plants after they emerged from bankruptcy.
Energy Harbor owns three nuclear plants — Beaver Valley in Pennsylvania, Davis-Besse and Perry, both in Ohio — along with two coal-fired power plants, W.H. Sammis in Ohio and Pleasants in West Virginia.
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