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Fighting Waste With Waste At Big Data Centers

The Microsoft Data Plant runs entirely on the methane emitted by the wastewater treatment facility next door. (Leigh Paterson/Inside Energy)
The Microsoft Data Plant runs entirely on the methane emitted by the wastewater treatment facility next door. (Leigh Paterson/Inside Energy)

Every day, Americans use a lot of digital data, from checking Facebook to sending email. It all seems kind of intangible – stored and processed in the cloud. But this data actually exists on a server at one of the millions of data centers across the country.

These facilities that process tweets and taps use and waste massive amounts of of electricity. Leigh Paterson of Here & Now contributor Inside Energy takes us to an experimental Wyoming data center that is fighting energy waste, using waste.

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