• 2 days U.S. On Track To Unseat Saudi Arabia As No.2 Oil Producer In the World
  • 2 days Senior Interior Dept. Official Says Florida Still On Trump’s Draft Drilling Plan
  • 2 days Schlumberger Optimistic In 2018 For Oilfield Services Businesses
  • 2 days Only 1/3 Of Oil Patch Jobs To Return To Canada After Downturn Ends
  • 2 days Statoil, YPF Finalize Joint Vaca Muerta Development Deal
  • 2 days TransCanada Boasts Long-Term Commitments For Keystone XL
  • 2 days Nigeria Files Suit Against JP Morgan Over Oil Field Sale
  • 2 days Chinese Oil Ships Found Violating UN Sanctions On North Korea
  • 3 days Oil Slick From Iranian Tanker Explosion Is Now The Size Of Paris
  • 3 days Nigeria Approves Petroleum Industry Bill After 17 Long Years
  • 3 days Venezuelan Output Drops To 28-Year Low In 2017
  • 3 days OPEC Revises Up Non-OPEC Production Estimates For 2018
  • 3 days Iraq Ready To Sign Deal With BP For Kirkuk Fields
  • 3 days Kinder Morgan Delays Trans Mountain Launch Again
  • 3 days Shell Inks Another Solar Deal
  • 4 days API Reports Seventh Large Crude Draw In Seven Weeks
  • 4 days Maduro’s Advisors Recommend Selling Petro At Steep 60% Discount
  • 4 days EIA: Shale Oil Output To Rise By 1.8 Million Bpd Through Q1 2019
  • 4 days IEA: Don’t Expect Much Oil From Arctic National Wildlife Refuge Before 2030
  • 4 days Minister Says Norway Must Prepare For Arctic Oil Race With Russia
  • 4 days Eight Years Late—UK Hinkley Point C To Be In Service By 2025
  • 4 days Sunk Iranian Oil Tanker Leave Behind Two Slicks
  • 4 days Saudi Arabia Shuns UBS, BofA As Aramco IPO Coordinators
  • 4 days WCS-WTI Spread Narrows As Exports-By-Rail Pick Up
  • 5 days Norway Grants Record 75 New Offshore Exploration Leases
  • 5 days China’s Growing Appetite For Renewables
  • 5 days Chevron To Resume Drilling In Kurdistan
  • 5 days India Boosts Oil, Gas Resource Estimate Ahead Of Bidding Round
  • 5 days India’s Reliance Boosts Export Refinery Capacity By 30%
  • 5 days Nigeria Among Worst Performers In Electricity Supply
  • 5 days ELN Attacks Another Colombian Pipeline As Ceasefire Ceases
  • 6 days Shell Buys 43.8% Stake In Silicon Ranch Solar
  • 6 days Saudis To Award Nuclear Power Contracts In December
  • 6 days Shell Approves Its First North Sea Oil Project In Six Years
  • 6 days China Unlikely To Maintain Record Oil Product Exports
  • 6 days Australia Solar Power Additions Hit Record In 2017
  • 6 days Morocco Prepares $4.6B Gas Project Tender
  • 6 days Iranian Oil Tanker Sinks After Second Explosion
  • 9 days Russia To Discuss Possible Exit From OPEC Deal
  • 9 days Iranian Oil Tanker Drifts Into Japanese Waters As Fires Rage On
Alt Text

Overcoming Wind Energy’s Biggest Obstacle

New research suggests that smaller,…

Alt Text

Microsoft, Google Turn To Wind Energy

Wind major Vattenfall has just…

Michael McDonald

Michael McDonald

Michael is an assistant professor of finance and a frequent consultant to companies regarding capital structure decisions and investments. He holds a PhD in finance…

More Info

Microsoft Bets Big On Wind

Offshore wind

Microsoft Corporation has always been known for their image of environmental protection but this may be their biggest validation to date. The tech company announced on Monday they are in the process converting their datacenter in Cheyenne Wyoming to rely entirely on wind energy. Microsoft will be using three wind farms, two in Kansas owned by Allianz Risk Transfer AG, and the other by Black Hills Corp. in Wyoming. The farms will provide Microsoft with 178 megawatts and 59 megawatts of capacity in wind power respectively.

Microsoft uses datacenters to operate their cloud services. These facilities require an ample amount of electricity to function and the usage levels are only growing as the service becomes more conventional. Microsoft’s goal is to attain a level of 44 percent use of renewables by the end of the year. This is simply another dimension of competition for tech companies promoting cloud services. Amazon web services (AWS) hopes to achieve a level of 40 percent reliance on renewables by the end of the year. Google only taps into clean energy for 35 percent for their datacenters.

Black Hills Corp. is one of the two companies entering the contract with Microsoft. The publically traded company disclosed on October 25th they would be offering a dividend for any of their shareholders prior to November 15th. The stock has been showing a downward trend since the announcement but will likely rebound based on the future success with their new partner. The company’s stock climbed 30 cents following Microsoft’s press release. Microsoft has always been considered a safe long-term investment. With an average earnings growth rate forecasted at 8.13 percent over the next five years, the company is generally a safe investment choice. Related: Trump’s War On Climate Change

Under Microsoft’s agreement with Black Hills, any surplus power can be stored in backup generators and later distributed to the grid at a discounted rate. In terms of their public image, this will benefit both firms. Corporate promotion of renewable energy is becoming routine for industry leaders. Governments often provide tax cuts to these companies for taking the initiative and aligning their interests with global efforts. Bloomberg forecasts that the top 50 corporations that purchase solar and wind energy will have accounted for 63.4 gigawatts of total production added by 2025.

This can be chalked up as another victory for renewables as we slowly shift away from common power sources like coal and oil. Local Wyoming consumers will prefer this alternative, more eco-friendly source of power as opposed to power from the grid likely produced using power plants. On a larger scale, as we observe the nation moving away from fuel sources such as coal, crude oil, and natural gas, we can expect the price of these products to decline. Investors should write long-term futures in any of these sources as they are replaced. To hedge their bets, individuals should buy green ETFs, made up of environmentally friendly corporations.

By Michael McDonald of Oilprice.com

More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:




Back to homepage


Leave a comment
  • Bud on November 17 2016 said:
    What do they do when the wind doesnt blow? Seriously, this is not news unless MC provided the seed capital to develop these wind farms. When they start spending 9 figures on developing wind and solar, I will be impressed, and then I will sell their stock short as Amazon is going to roll right over them. Here is a topic worthy of a post graduate degree: Does the stall in cost benefit shown by the German example where such renewables have reached 15% of grid usage translate to the North American grid structure?
  • Lee James on November 19 2016 said:
    When will "Oil Price" become "Energy Price?" Just wondering ....

    U.S. tech corporations, investors and forward-thinking CEOs are the bright spot in U.S. energy. Increasingly, they are transitioning to clean energy even without leveraging public-purpose incentives. They are transitioning privately.

    In the case of this project, the availability of wind for power is hedged with three different locations in two states. Excess power will be banked for power generation later on.

    Must be working -- the list and size of projects continues to grow.
  • Poupon Marx on November 19 2016 said:
    The actual "usage", the amount that a windmill puts out if averaged for a year is 17%, with periods of nil, null, nothing. Eventually, windmill fans will kill al the birds and insect eating bats in North America. And when they have to be replaced, the load of the electricity consumer will be upwards of 500% of what conventional thermal plants produce.

    So how do they get built and operate? S-U-B-S-I-D-I-E-S. All to perpetuate fantasy and for cronies and corrupt scum to make out with millions and billions of taxpayer money.
  • Lee James on November 22 2016 said:
    Lee James, These companies like microsoft are definitely banking on the tax credits received. They can take these huge tax credits and legally transfer them for cash to other companies who may or may not be major polluters.

    Bottom line is taxpayers are buying power for microsoft, subsidizing their operations to an extent. I like wind but i dont like buying it for Microsoft tbrough income tax from our paychecks. That has to stop.

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News