Google expands into alternative energy

Google, which already gets some of its power from one of the largest solar power installations in the US, is going to invest hundreds of millions of dollars into a quest to lower the cost of producing electricity, according to an article in the Houston Chronicle. Their goal, according to Larry Page, Google co-founder, is to cut the cost of solar power by 25 to 50 percent. The initiative is called, “Renewable Energy Cheaper Than Coal.”

“If we achieve these goals, we are going to be in the (electricity) business in a very big way,” Page said. “We should be able to make a lot of money from this.” Google plans to produce one gigawatt of power from renewable sources at prices below the current rates of coal-burning power plants.

“ will invest “hundreds of millions” in companies specializing in renewable energy, Page said. The philanthropic arm, which sits under the umbrella of the Google Foundation, will draw upon its holdings of nearly $2 billion worth Google’s stock, which gained $7.57 Tuesday to close at $673.57. already is working with two outside companies: Pasadena-based eSolar Inc., which specializes in solar thermal power and Alameda-based Makani Power Inc., which specializes in wind power.”

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