Our new report, How Dirty Is Your Data?, hones in on one U.S. state that is quickly becoming a dirty data epicenter. Facebook, Google, and Apple have all chosen North Carolina as the location for new data center infrastructure because the utility has aggressively recruited Internet companies with the promise of cheap and dirty coal power.

Our dirty data case study got the attention of the editorial staff at one of North Carolina's biggest newspaper this week, and their opinion piece provides an important local perspective on the dangers of coal, including mountain top removal mining and pollution. Here's how the News & Observer's editorial begins:

North Carolina now has three three-of-a-kind regions: the Triad, the Research Triangle and the Dirty Data Triangle.

The dirty what?

That designation comes courtesy of Greenpeace, the environmental organization, and it refers to the huge data centers - a.k.a. server farms - built or being built in Western North Carolina for California-based Apple, Facebook and Google.

Google came first. The Internet giant has a $600 million data center up and running in the Caldwell County city of Lenoir. Apple's center, described as a $1 billion project, is nearing completion in the Catawba County town of Maiden. Facebook last year chose a site in Forest City, in Rutherford County, for a $450 million facility.

The longest leg of this emerging triangle is about 45 miles. What's the "dirty" part? Coal, mainly


Read more: http://www.newsobserver.com/2011/04/28/1158644/feeding-triplets.html#ixzz1Kpxy4HIk