Apple fails again to get on the right side of green even though it is building a solar power array
Apple is in the early stages of installing an array of solar panels for its data centre in Maiden, North Carolina, it has been revealed.
This project, code named Project Dolphin Solar Farm A Expanded, could be seen as an effort by the company to improve its environmental image after repeated criticism over its track-record in China and its reliance on “dirty” sources to power.
Slash and burn not very green
Unfortunately, the company is in the process of burning and clearing 171 acres of green space near its 500,000 square foot iDataCentre – built in 2009 to house data for iTunes, MobileMe and iCloud – to build a solar power array. If estimates are to be believed, the solar power would only provide a maximum of 24 Megawatts, a fraction of the estimated 40 to 100 Megawatts the data centre would require.
Ironically, a major setback to Apple’s efforts to improve its use of green sources of energy, is the damage and pollution associated with the construction of the array. The land needs to be cleared and resloped first, which involves the burning of trees and other debris from the property.
This burning has incensed local residents who, according to the Hickory Daily Record, were given no advance warning, and are now surrounded by clouds of thick, black smoke and fine floating ash. One resident, Zelda Vosburgh, told the Record that the burning has also flushed the wildlife out of their habitat. “It’s pushed everything out of the woods into the area here. I had a snake on my steps,” she said. “I’ve seen rabbits and squirrels everywhere.”
Another, LaDonna Hodge said that while she is pro-corporation and economic development for the region, it is hard to tolerate when it is spewing thick smoke that makes it difficult to breath in your own backyard, according to the report.