Amazon’s new Virginia HQ will be 100% solar-powered

Amazon’s new Virginia HQ will be 100% solar-powered

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In 2019, Amazon announced that Arlington, Virginia, would be home to its second headquarters, known as “HQ2.”

In planning for this growth, one crucial focus area has been figuring out the best way to power what will eventually be a four-million-square-foot campus. And the answer was clear: with 100% renewable energy.

This decision reflects Amazon’s long-term commitment to sustainability. As part of Amazon’s commitment to The Climate Pledge, announced last year, Amazon has already begun to take steps to become net zero carbon by 2040. Incorporating sustainability into Amazon’s growth plan for HQ2 is a top priority.

Pittsylvania County in Virginia will be the home of a new solar farm, which will power Amazon’s new headquarters along with other Amazon-owned operations across the Commonwealth, including Whole Foods Markets and fulfillment centers. The project is planned for completion by the summer of 2021. Amazon has contracted 82 MW of the new 120 MW solar farm, which is expected to generate 172,500 MWh of renewable energy annually. It will be Amazon’s tenth renewable energy project in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Patrick Leonard, senior manager of Amazon’s renewable energy procurement team, has led this important initiative, which has an added twist — Amazon is sharing the project with Arlington County. Amazon is taking about two-thirds of the renewable energy generated, and Arlington will take the remainder.

“To address the climate crisis and transition to a low-carbon economy, the majority of the world’s energy must come from zero-carbon power sources, but renewable energy buyers face regulatory and market hurdles,” said Leonard. “My role working with the team in Arlington County involved sharing perspectives on how to strategically assess a renewable energy project that is right for a business or a government and the environment. We are thrilled that we could share this project with Arlington County.”

“Arlington is pleased that we will be sharing the output of the soon-to-be built Virginia solar farm with Amazon, and pleased that Amazon shares our commitment to renewable energy and to achieving net carbon zero in our operations,” said Arlington County board chair, Libby Garvey. “Arlington’s purchase of electricity from Dominion’s solar farm will take us a long way toward our goal of 100% use of renewable sources for all electricity used in government operations by 2025.”

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