Real Estate

Microsoft, Meta, others face rising drought risk to their data centers


Drought conditions are worsening in the U.S., and that is having an outsized impact on the real estate that houses the internet.

Data centers generate massive amounts of heat through their servers because of the enormous amount of power they use. Water is the cheapest and most common method used to cool the centers.

In just one day, the average data center could use 300,000 gallons of water to cool itself — the same water consumption as 100,000 homes, according to researchers at Virginia Tech who also estimated that one in five data centers draws water from stressed watersheds mostly in the…


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