Plans for Amazon Dublin data centres faced with opposition

A representative for environmental and social justice non-government organisation, Gluaiseacht, said "projects with this level of proposed new energy and water usage should only be ever considered in the most dire of needs".
Plans for Amazon Dublin data centres faced with opposition

Gordon Deegan

Amazon's plans for two new data centre buildings at the Clonshaugh Business and Technology Park in north Dublin are facing opposition.

The application to Dublin City Council by Colliers Properties LLC regarding the Amazon-operated data centre buildings follows the company incurring an estimated capital spend of €2 billion on its network of data centres in Ireland over the past decade.

During the 2011-2020 period, Amazon incurred an additional estimated operational spend of €2.4 billion on its data centres in the State.

However, in response to the new application, environmental and social justice non-government organisation (NGO), Gluaiseacht pointed out that Amazon secured planning permission for a separate data centre scheme in August at the same business park in Dublin 17.

The group said: “And no sooner is that one granted than they have put in for another Data Centre complex in the same location of the same size. This is project splitting that is being used to hide the true size and energy guzzling status of Amazon’s operations in Ireland.”

Energy consumption

On behalf of Gluaiseacht, Eoin O Leidhin has told the council: "Projects with this level of proposed new energy and water usage should only be ever considered in the most dire of needs.

"A data centre simply does not meet this criterion especially when there has been no limits set on how much data is reasonable to store and there are no incentives for individuals and organisations to minimise their data usage in the face of ever-increasing demands on energy."

Grassroots organisation Not Here Not Anywhere has also outlined its opposition to the scheme.

Planning consultant for Colliers Properties LLC, John Spain & Associates confirmed Amazon's investment in data centres in Ireland during 2020 supported 2,300 jobs.

Mr Spain further stated the same economic report by Indecon found that in 2020 Amazon invested €80 million in Dublin city and the company's spend with Irish contractors overseas on its data centres had increased to €228 million.

Mr Spain added: “The proposed development represents a significant investment that will create additional direct, indirect and induced economic and employment benefits for the area.”

Mr Spain contended that the proposal represents a positive design solution and appropriate proposal for the zoned lands. He added that Amazon is on a path to being 100 per cent powered by renewable energy by 2025.

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