Microsoft to build a new datacenter in Finland

A new datacenter region would accelerate sustainable digital transformation and enable large scale carbon-free district heating. The datacenters are designed to operate with 100 percent emission-free energy and will supply heat for the cities of Espoo and Kauniainen, and the municipality of Kirkkonummi, in a unique collaboration with Fortum.

Microsoft has announced it intends to build a new datacenter region in Southern Finland. To support customer needs for high availability and resilience, the new datacenter region will feature Azure Availability Zones, unique physical locations equipped with independent power, networking, and cooling for additional tolerance to datacenter failures.

The investment is in response to Finland’s growing demand for high performance, sustainable computing, and fast and reliable access to Microsoft services. The new datacenter region will play a pivotal role in accelerating the digital transformation of the government, businesses, customers, and partners across Finland. According to a recent IDC study, over the next four years, Microsoft, its ecosystem, and cloud customers together could generate more than €EUR17.2 billion in new revenue and will add over 11,000 skilled IT jobs to the Finnish economy.

“The decision to invest in a datacenter region that also provides surplus heat to our cities and homes is a win-win. It will accelerate Finland’s digital growth while making our energy system greener. I also hope that this collaboration can serve as a model to other countries and cities looking to achieve the double transformation of climate neutrality and digital competitiveness”

Sanna Marin, Prime Minister of Finland

“Developing solutions for global challenges together with partners is a strategic priority for Fortum, and we are proud to embark on this exceptional journey together with Microsoft. By tapping into waste heat from datacenters, we can provide clean heat for homes, businesses and public buildings in the capital area of Finland and reduce up to 400,000 tons of CO2 emissions annually. This is a significant and practical step for a cleaner world”

Markus Rauramo, President and CEO of Fortum.

”Fingrid is responsible for secure electricity transmission across the grid in Finland. We are proud to be working with Microsoft to create opportunities for such a huge industrial project. In this demanding project, we have found a solution for our customers that guarantees a reliable supply of electricity to the datacenter”

said Jukka Ruusunen, President and CEO of Fingrid

In a unique collaboration with Fortum Corporation, the waste heat produced in the datacenters will be converted to district heating, serving Finland’s second largest city Espoo and neighboring Kauniainen, and the municipality of Kirkkonummi, in what to date will be the world’s largest scheme to recycle waste heat from data centers. District heating is a system for distributing heat generated either in a centralized location with fossil fuels, or as in Fortum’s case, from increasingly emission-free, distributed heat sources. Heat is transferred to customers through a system of insulated pipes for residential and commercial heating requirements such as space and water heating. The waste heat recycled for district heating, along with other measures, will help the City of Espoo and the neighboring communities to reach their ambitious CO2 emission reduction targets, leading among other things to decommissioning of Fortum’s last coal-fired heat unit in Espoo.

As one of the largest purchasers of renewable energy in the world, Microsoft will add to its portfolio with new renewable energy supply in Finland. The company is committed to executing power purchase agreements equivalent to 100% of its energy needs by 2025.

“Finland is at the forefront of digitalization and innovation, and the nation’s world-class companies and forward-looking public sector organizations are leading in the digital transformation of their sectors. We are incredibly proud of the novel way this datacenter will sustainably power Finnish digital transformation, while also heating Finnish homes and businesses and helping cities achieve their emissions targets. In this unique collaboration, Microsoft and Fortum combine their world leading expertise in cloud computing and sustainable energy solutions, transforming the design thinking of datacenters of the future.”

said Cindy Rose, President of Microsoft Western Europe.

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