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Google is expanding the company’s Lenoir, N.C. data center. Google’s local electricity provider, Duke Energy, has pledged to develop a new program for large companies, who want to buy renewable power for their operations, says Google in a blog post. . Duke is expected to file a plan with their state commission within 90 days.

Google says it is important to work directly with utility partners to find solutions that will make more renewable energy available. The most straightforward way to do this is for utilities to offer a renewable power option for companies that request it—something that’s not currently offered by most utilities, says Gary Demasi, director, Global Infrastructure with Google.

Gary Demasi (Director, Global Infrastructure, Google):  Offering companies like Google a renewable energy option has many advantages. Because the service is made available to a wide range of customers, companies that don’t have the ability or resources to pursue alternative approaches can participate. And by tapping utilities’ strengths in power generation and delivery, it makes it easier for companies to buy renewable energy on a larger scale.

Google is looking for ways to expand the use of renewable energy, says the company. Google has committed more than $1 billion to renewable energy project investments till date.

[Image: Google’s Lenoir, N.C. Data Center, Image courtesy: Google]