Facebook to build Open Compute datacentre in Ireland

Facebook plans to build a datacentre in Ireland, its second in Europe

Facebook plans to build a datacentre in Ireland, its second in Europe

Facebook this week revealed plans to build an Open Compute datacentre in a bid to support its growth ambitions in Europe.

The proposed location of the new datacentre in County Meath will enable the company to make use of local renewable energy sources and talent, and would be the social media giant’s second in Europe. The first, in Lulea, Sweden, uses 100 per cent hydroelectricity to power its servers.

Facebook said the datacentre could generate hundreds of millions of euros in economic benefits for the region. The project is being supported by the by the Department of Jobs through IDA Ireland. Martin Shanahan, the organisation’s chief executive said: “Facebook’s existing relationship with Ireland is extremely strong and extensive in scope, but the news that the company wants to build its second European data centre in a regional location such as Meath will cement the relationship even further.”

“Ireland has been a home for Facebook since 2007 and today’s planning application demonstrates our continued interest to invest in Ireland,” said Facebook’s datacentre strategy head Rachel Peterson.

“We hope to build an innovative, environmentally friendly data centre that will help us continue to connect people in Ireland and around the world – while supporting local job creation and Ireland’s successful technology economy. We look forward to continuing our conversations with the Clonee community in coming weeks,” she said.

Facebook has less than a handful of datacentres globally but the data volumes it generates – and the infrastructure it needs to support its services – is significant. The company adds 300 million new photos every day, has a data warehouse of over 300 petabytes and processes hundreds of terabytes of data daily. And given nearly three quarters of Facebook users are outside the US, its build-out in Europe and other key strategic regions (India for instance) outside North America will likely continue.