Data Centers and Air Quality
Data centers, also called server farms, house the servers that manage email and instant messages, store data, and run computer applications. Grant County has become a popular location for data centers because of its dependable and economical electric supply. The region has a 99.9 percent annual power reliability rate which is crucial to technology systems management and appealing to data center businesses.
Each data center is equipped with multiple diesel-powered backup generators. Because diesel exhaust is a toxic air pollutant (containing nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, organic compounds, and other small particles), Ecology must review air permits before construction. The required air permit is called a Notice of Construction permit. The application must:
If emissions exceed air quality standards, a health impact assessment must also be conducted to ensure there is minimal public health risk.
A sales tax exemption incentive is available to owners and tenants of eligible data centers (at least 100,000 square feet) in rural counties. The data center must have a building permit to construct, remodel, or expand the center issued between July 1, 2015 and June 30, 2025.
For more information, read the Department of Revenue's Tax Incentives Overview fact sheet.
Public comment on data center permits
We are currently accepting public comment on Microsoft's request to revise the existing air permit for its MWH (formerly Oxford Data Center) data center in Grant County. The updated permit would add 8 new reserve (backups to the backup) generators. Comments are being accepted October 6, 2016 — November 4, 2016. Send your comments to Kari Johnson or to 4601 North Monroe Street, Spokane, WA 99205.
To learn more about this project, read these documents:
Documents for public review and comment:
General information about air quality and data centers
Data center sites in Quincy
The most recent documents about data center projects in Quincy are provided below.
Dell Data Center
Microsoft Columbia Data Center
Microsoft MWH (formerly Oxford Data Center)
Public Comment Period: October 6, 2016 - November 4, 2016
Previous Oxford Data Center Permit Documents:
Original Oxford Data Center Permit Documents:
Sabey Intergate-Quincy Data Center
Revised Sabey Intergate Data Center
Original Sabey Intergate Data Center Permit Documents
Vantage Data Center
Find out about data centers in other areas of Washington
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