Google to Invest $1.1 bn in Data Centre to Boost AI Growth in Finland

Alphabet-owned Google announced it will invest an additional €1 billion ($1.1 billion) to expand its data centre campus in Finland, aiming to bolster its artificial intelligence (AI) business growth across Europe.
Google Play StoreThe Nordic region has become a favored location for data centres due to its cooler climate, tax incentives, and abundant renewable energy. However, neighboring countries Sweden and Norway have recently expressed reservations about hosting data centres, with some experts advocating for the use of renewable power in higher-value products like green steel, Reuters news report said.

Finland, on the other hand, has significantly increased its wind power capacity, which grew by 75 percent to 5,677 megawatts in 2022 alone. This rapid expansion has occasionally driven electricity prices into the negative on particularly windy days, indicating surplus renewable capacity that can be utilized by data centres such as Google’s. The tech giant has secured long-term contracts for wind power in Finland.

Analysts anticipate a substantial rise in data centres’ power consumption due to the swift growth of AI applications. Google cited this anticipated demand, along with the near-total reliance on carbon-free energy at its existing Hamina data centre, as key reasons for its investment.

“Heat coming out of our Finnish data center will be re-routed to the district heating network in nearby Hamina, covering local households, schools, and public service buildings,” Google said in its news statement. The company reiterated its goal to achieve net zero emissions across all its operations and value chain by 2030.

This investment in Finland follows Google’s recent announcement of new data centre projects in the Netherlands and Belgium, further demonstrating the company’s commitment to expanding its infrastructure to support AI and cloud services in Europe.

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