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Google Promises $150M for Green Manufacturing Footprint

Google has announced it will spend $150 million on renewable energy projects in “key manufacturing regions” for its products, including Nest, with a goal to encourage $1.5 billion in capital investment for renewables.  Details on the commitment are limited, because the deals are yet to be negotiated. The technology giant cannot confirm whether it would spend the funds through direct investments, power-purchase agreements or by other means.

A Google spokesperson says the investments will be made “over the next several years” in projects that will sell into local and regional grid systems in those areas. Alongside its own contributions, the company expects “financial and manufacturing partners (plus debt)” to fund a variety of wind and solar installations.  Much of Google’s manufacturing is currently based in China.

The projects are meant to complement commitments Google made in August, pledging carbon-neutrality for 100 percent of its shipments to and from customers by 2020. This week, Google said its investment will also “help generate renewable energy that is equivalent to the amount of electricity used to manufacture our Google consumer hardware products.”

The announcement comes on the heels of Google’s plan to invest in 18 deals encompassing 1.6 gigawatts of wind and solar around the world, a portfolio the company calls the largest corporate renewables purchase ever made.

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