Tuesday, October 17, 2006
Solar Powered Office Park
Google's headquarters in Silicon Valley may be powered by sunlight in the not-too-distant future. The Internet company announced its plans to install a solar-powered generation system that will supply 30 percent of the electricity required by its one-million square foot office complex in Mountain View, California. This will make it the largest system of its type installed by any corporation, with the capacity to supply enough power for a thousand California homes.
The cost savings are obvious, but Google real estate VP David Radcliffe claims that the company is also thinking of the environment. "We wanted to dispel the myth that you can't be both Green and profitable."
Some, of course, may think Google is simply trying to one-up Microsoft, since everyone knows that there is as much sunlight to be had in the skies of Seattle as there is tuna in the Sahara. Hence, Bill Gates' behemoth is unlikely to emerge from the "dark side" anytime soon.
Utilizing sunlight to save on illumination costs is a corporate strategy as old as the hills. Henry Ford built the assembly plant for his Model T's with enormous windows designed to capitalize on the availability of natural light. Although one suspects that bringing solar power to Google won't entail adding more windows for its cubicle-bound minions, it'd be nice to have them bask a little more often in the sun as well, would it not?
I only wish that the folks at Google could become "enlightened" enough to give the White Collar Warrior a few more hits in their search engine. But what can ya do?
"Google plans largest U.S. solar-powered office" from Scientific American