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Irish court gives $1 billion Apple data center green light
12 October 2017, 04:38 | Edward Lowe
West reawakens as Apple gets green light to build Athenry data centre
Apple has finally been granted permission to build its €850M ($1B) European data center in Ireland, more than two-and-a-half years after it was first announced.
High Court judge Paul McDermott dismissed the appeals brought by three campaigners, who were concerned about the environmental impact of the project, which is to occupy almost 166,000 square meters in County Galway, west Ireland.
When the project was announced, Apple said it meant to spend €1.7 billion (£1.5 billion) on a data centre in Ireland and another in Denmark, with each one costing €850 million (£762 million).
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Artists impression of proposed data centre. Objectors are likely to appeal the court's decision, meaning it could end up in the Supreme Court.
A number of local residents challenged An Bord Pleanála's decision amid concerns it hadn't carried out the necessary environmental assessment. The facility will cost around £750 million and is expected to provide 100 jobs in the local area.
Apple wants to build the data centre in this forest.Business Insider/Sam SheadApple wants to build eight data halls on a 500-acre site in Derrydonnell Forest, which is owned by state-sponsored forestry firm Coillte, and situated roughly three miles from Athenry.
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Without even having started to power Apple's services, the company's data centre in Athenry has already made some profound changes in Irish regulations and citizens involvement. However, the first hearing in June was delayed by a week, then it was held back to 27 July, with the final decision emerging today (12 October).
Apple argued Mr McDonagh had made no submissions to Galway County Council in respect of the original planning application and nor had he appealed to the Board before bringing his case.
Paul Keane, from the Apple for Athenry Facebook group which has campaigned to allow the tech giant to build its data centre there, described the decision as "great news". This prompted 2,000 local people from Athenry to march in support of the data centre past year.
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However, Aguero hit back at his critics for suggesting he should not have been in Amsterdam in his days off from the club. "The money isn't a problem here", he told TyC Sports .