Apple gets the green light for its data center in Ireland

An Bord Pleanala, an independent appeals review board, has granted approval for Apple’s 850 million euro Apple data center and a related electrical substation in Athenry, Ireland, reports 9to5Mac. Apple planned to start building the data center on a 500-acre site before the end of 2015. However, it was delayed when unhappy Irish citizens lodged formal complaints with the Irish government.

A COMPUTER-GENERATED IMAGE OF APPLE’S PROPOSED DATA CENTER, COURTESY OF “BUSINESS INSIDER.”

A COMPUTER-GENERATED IMAGE OF APPLE’S PROPOSED DATA CENTER, COURTESY OF “BUSINESS INSIDER.”

Complainants argued that the data center would increase noise and light pollution, flooding, and traffic. Some also said it would act as an eyesore and others said it would harm the local badger and bat populations.

An Bord Pleanala’s approval requires Apple to carry out all of the proposals put forward in its oral response to objections, as well as imposing additional conditions. These include reducing the number of car-parking spaces, promptly restoring removed or damaged trees, limiting noise levels, running all external cables underground, ensuring no extra development above roof level and facilitating an archaeological appraisal of the site.

In February 2015 Apple announced its plans to build its first two data centers in Europe to host iCloud, iTunes and other online services. Located in Ireland and Denmark, these facilities will be powered by 100% renewable energy.