Apple's building an $850 million solar farm in California

Apple CEO Tim Cook today announced that Apple is investing $850 million in a brand-new solar farm to power their California operations. The 1,300-acre facility is being built in Monterey County, California, and will produce enough electricity to power all of the new Apple Campus 2, as well as Apple's other offices and retail stores in California, as well as their Newark, CA, data center.

How much power are we talking about? Cook said it's enough to power 60,000 homes, which equals out to about 34 million kWh every month.

Harkening back to Cook's reaction a year ago when he was asked about the return on investment in environmental initiatives, Cook said:

"We believe in leaving the world better than we found it, and we can do this through our products… We know that climate change is real. The time for talk has passed and the time for action is now, and we've shown that with what we've done."

But there is a return on investment here. Despite the $850 million outlay, Cook says it will be a net positive for Apple as they'll getting energy from the solar farm at a fixed rate, compared to the variable rates that they pay for "brown" energy.

"We're doing this because it's right to do, and good financially to do it."

Source: Apple