Our lunatic planning process
Apple has torn up a blueprint to build a €850m (£742m) data centre in Ireland, blaming delays in the planning process that have stalled the project for almost three years. The Cupertino-HQ'd biz announced plans for 166,296m2 (1.79 million ft2) Galway-based bit barn in 2015, intending to use green energy sources to sate its …
No. it's Ireland's (if you are Irish, sorry) planning process working as it should and NOT riding slipshod over the concerns of the local population and not allowing corporations to vandalise the environment.
Ripping up woodland is never a "green option" no matter where you get your power from.
Hasn't Ireland abandoned industrial sites to redevelop, instead of letting them rotting slowly and become dangerous areas? I understand builder prefer virgin land because it costs far less to build upon, but it's time to start from re-using already developed but abandoned land - before it's too late. If needed, make more economical by subsidizing some way the costs of demolishing unused buildings and reclaim the land.
.... meant Apple has now less needs to buy consensus abroad. Money also has to be put in buybacks to make shareholder (included executives...) richer.
If you country relies only on attracting foreign companies because of very low taxes, and knowing you'll knee to every request of theirs, you're be dependent on the slightest breeze of changes, and winds may not always be favourable. Also Brexit made Ireland a less useful cheaper but close alternative to Britain.
Obviously 360mW is the estimate of total power requirement on which they have to pay a carbon levy ... possibly
I would hope that the green energy was not to be bio-mass derived using rotting apples as that would have been so deeply ironic that the US based Jobs-worths wouldn't get the joke ...
Ah! That is the 'green' energy that comes via the grid from coal fired power stations then.
Since there is no separate green energy grid no one can tell if they are getting green energy or not and all of the green energy has to be supported by non green energy suppliers (see http://www.gridwatch.templar.co.uk/ )
I have seen solar panels in Orkney. I imagine that Ireland has the sun higher in the sky making them even more efficient (or less inneficient).
I prefer wind turbines. The whole UK is windy and the further north the more you get. It also sends nimbys ballistic!
Entire weeks with no wind over most of western Europe, inc Ireland. Wind needs 100% backup of other sources and isn't scaleable to much more than 10% when it is there.
Also weeks with grey sky or rain. West of Ireland has about x6 the rainfall of Dublin. There is already about as much hydroelectric as is feasible. Ireland is pretty flat in the middle with most mountains around the edges. Hence bogs.
Iceland is a better choice for datacentres. Or Northern France. Ireland is only an artificial choice.
Is there any way to generate power with rain?
By building some sort of massive concrete wall across the end of a valley, letting all the rain build up in some sort of artificial lake behind it and then let it run out through some sort of turbine ?
Sounds like typical pie-in-the sky greenwash magic-unicorn thinking
So Apple consider themselves "green" and want to rip up some ancient woodland to prove how nice they are.
Do these people even stop to think about what they are doing or is it a case of "we're Apple, what we do is right by definition so fuck everybody else".
When I went past the proposed site a couple of years ago, it had been clear felled. i.e. there was nothing over 6ft high standing. Ancient woodland? Well some lumberjack had gotten their first and plundered the timber.
Never mind Dublin, you can make sure that these very same objectors don't drive Amazon away as well.
Hey Apple, I'm sure that the 'North' would let you build your DC if you really wanted to put one on the Island of Ireland.
The "local" opposition consisted of about 4 people. At least one of which was a Dublin-based (another part of Ireland) businessman with an alternative site! The vast majority of the locals - someone correct me if it's less than 99% wanted it to go ahead, not so much for direct employment, but for all the services and ecosystem that would have built around it.
The reality is that now the site will probably end up going to a company far less environmentally conscious than apple!
This is an affront to democracy and a further example of how a few people with enough money can use the legal system to put their personal objectives above those who live around them.
> Ecologic Data Centres
Nowadays you can really sell anything
I wonder whether that "renewable energy" talk does even make sense, I suspect you could fill the datacenter with oil about 50 times just to build the goods that go into it, then do it again after 3 years when the upgrade cycle hits.
Might as well throw in a jijawatt nuke or two, it would preclude having to build those windmills.
Yes, the Wicklow guy was self interest.
However this was Apple ego. There are plenty of sites already serviced, close enough to existing likely employees and far more suitable.
Yes, there wasn't much forest, but Ireland has an even lower amount of percentage forest than the UK, which has one of the lowest in Europe. Losing any land to a datacentre is crazy when plenty of existing space is available. Shannon Industrial estate. Three Industrial estates in Limerick. Nenagh. Very many other places. But not "posh" enough for Apple.
I see Apple and Eircom have moved their Europe / Ireland HQs to Jersey to take advantage of UK's lax offshore Tax havens now that Ireland is actually going to charge the Corporate Tax they claim to. Apple was paying about 1/100th of Ireland's official Corporate Rate. EU is finally clamping down. Is it the real reason some top Tories want hard Brexit? UK is sovereign over more offshore havens than any other nation.
Who cares about "posh" for a datacenter? It isn't like customers go there...
Paying a higher tax rate in Ireland makes it a BETTER deal to spend money there, since they get a bigger deduction and thus pay fewer taxes. The only reason for putting the datacenter elsewhere tax-wise would be if they can get a lower tax rate somewhere else in the EU. That seems unlikely given the EU clamped down on Ireland's special arrangements, so other countries won't be able to offer them either.
The reason they were spending money there was because they wanted to stay in Ireland's good graces and keep the sweet deal going. That deal is gone, but through no fault of the Irish government, and Apple already has thousands of employees at other locations in the country so it would still make sense to build a datacenter there if they could get approval.