“Oregon city OKs Google data centers amid secrecy, water worries” [Nov. 9, Business] states the company “acquired the locale’s rights to 3.9 million gallons of water per day.” Four million gallons — a day. And not just any water like that in the Columbia River but water “that has gone through the city’s water treatment plant.” The Dalles City Council signed off unanimously on this, even though Wasco County, where The Dalles is located, “is suffering extreme and exceptional drought.” Good thing water isn’t nearly as important in sustaining life as data centers forming the “cloud.”
Speaking of clouds, “How much water the data centers would use … remains confidential.” Nothing like a massive deal done in secret to make “some residents uneasy,” especially when Google “is fighting a public records request for the information.”
But worry not: “Three studies related to the proposal were paid for by Google.” And thus the cloud descendeth so none may see The Dalles googled out of its water.
Michael Spence, Tukwila