Sunday, March 29, 2020

Washington Department of Ecology accepting comment on revised air permit for data center

The Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) is currently accepting public comments on proposed changes to the Sabey Integrate Quincy data center’s air permit, which regulates the Quincy, Washington center’s use of diesel backup generators.

The data center’s servers, which store data, facilitate emails and intsant messages and run applications, require cooling units to ensure that they do not overheat and backup generators to maintain operability during power outages. The facility’s current air permit allows for the operation of 44 backup generators, but the company is seeking to revise the permit to allow for more flexibility. This includes the use of smaller generators and improved testing procedures, as well as phased growth over a longer period. The revisions would also clarify some of the permit’s conditions and the addition of others, such as limits on the generators’ operational hours and amount of fuel used.

Air permits on diesel engines are an important measure to protect public and environmental health, as their exhaust includes gases and fine particles. Ecology is accepting public comments via mail until Jan. 10, and more information on the permit can be found on the department’s website, at its regional office in Spokane and at the Quincy City Hall and Library.

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Washington Department of Ecology

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