Iceland goes green with data centers and solar silicon
The Icelandic national energy body has decided to transfer sales negotiations from heavy industry to data centers and solar silicon production.
Landsvirkjun, the Icelandic national power company, announced last week that it has, “for the time being, decided not to enter into negotiations with aluminum companies planning to build in the south or west part of Iceland”.
The decision by Landsvirkjun to move its energy supplies towards less polluting, environmentally friendly industries such as data centers, marks a fundamental change in direction from its previous focus on aluminum smelters.
“This is a business decision. …we have wanted to increase our client base and diversify against risk, not to be dependant on one industry,” said Pall Magnusson, chairman of the board of Landsvirkjun to national newspaper Morgunbladid.
Landsvirkjun has already discussed energy contracts with several data center ventures and is also preparing for talks with companies interested in producing silicon for solar cells.
Verne Holdings, a joint venture between General Catalyst and Novator, is planning on constructing a major data center on the old NATO base next to Keflavik International Airport.
In an interview on Icelandic national radio, the CEO of Verne Holdings said that the new data center at Keflavik will host data from a wide range of industries, including financial, retail, oil and movie. It will also be one of the 20 largest of its kind in the world.
The data center will initially require approximately 5MW of power but will scale up to 50MW or more in the future. It will use the new Danice submarine fiber optic cable as its primary connection to Europe with secondary services through Farice 1.
A combination of cheap geothermal and hydroelectric energy, cool temperatures and high security makes Iceland a prime location for data centers.
For further details on data centers in Iceland, visit www.invest.is
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