Microsoft Athens data centers to promote big PV self-production

The energy needs of three data centers being planned by Microsoft at three separate facilities in the wider Athens area will almost exclusively be provided by large-scale solar energy systems, energypress sources have informed.

The initiative promises to pave the way for large-scale solar energy self-consumption, virtually non-existent in Greece at present.

An exact calculation of the solar energy capacity to be required by the Microsoft facilities is currently not possible as details on the size of this American investment have yet to be released.

Without a doubt, the energy capacity to be required at these Microsoft facilities will be big.

At present, the Stavros Niarchos Foundation’s rooftop hosts the country’s biggest self-consumption solar energy system, whose capacity is 1 MW.

Microsoft’s energy needs will greatly exceed this level as data centers are extremely energy-intensive facilities. On a global scale, it is estimated that data centers, combined, consume one percent of total energy demand.

The majority of self-consumption solar energy systems in Greece are small-scale systems. Legal framework has existed since 2016 but few enterprises have so far entered this domain.

Current regulations in Greece enable enterprises to sell 20 percent of solar energy output to the grid at specific prices.