Afternoon Coffee: Google puts big money behind renewables procurement, EU data centers; DHL hikes 2020 pricing in certain geographies

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Reuters reports that Google CEO Sundar Pichai has announced that the search giant will invest an additional 3 billion euros ($3.3 billion) in the next two years to expand its European data centers.

This includes an additional 600 million euros in the Hamina data center in Finland, bringing total investment in the site to 2 billion euros, Finland’s Prime Minister Antti Rinne told the joint news conference.

Google also announces massive procurement deal

The company has announced one of the largest procurement deals in the history of corporate renewables.

The tech giant said it would buy a 1.6-gigawatt package of agreements, including 18 new wind and solar deals across the globe. Of these, 720 megawatts will come from projects in the United States, including new solar farms in North Carolina (155 MW), South Carolina (75 MW) and Texas (490 MW).

This one agreement increases the company’s total renewable procurement by 40%to 5.5 GWm, which is equivalent to the generation capacity for electricity held by Lithuania or Uruguay, the company said in a blog post by CEO Sundar Pichai, according to a report in greenbiz.com.

Fitch Solutions forecasts a decade of corporate renewable power procurement growth

Continuing with the renewable energy news front, Fitch Solutions has said U.S. solar and wind generation capacity will average 7.9% and 3.9%, respectively, between 2022 and 2028. The report projects almost 120 GW of solar power to be deployed in that period.

DHL Express announces price increase from 2020…

The world’s leading international express service provider DHL has announced a price increase to take effect from January 1, 2020, for customers in Singapore, India and Germany, among others.

In India, the average shipment price increase will be 6.9% greater compared to 2019, while in Germany and Singapore the annual increase will amount to 4.9%. Spend Matters found no prices increase announcements for the U.S. at press time.

…while DHL Resilience360 adds AI advancements to its platform

DHL introduced the latest features of the Resilience360 platform at the 5th Annual Risk & Resilience Conference. “Using classification engines and collaborative filtering, Resilience360 is able to apply the algorithms to the Incident Monitoring module which forms the basis of the tool,” according to this release.

“AI will help to analyze millions of risk intelligence date sources daily and apply user behavior learnings to determine the relevancy of future disruptions, therefore improving the self-learning capabilities of the tool,” the release stated.

CA Assembly Bill 5 passes: Is the gig economy doomed?

That's the central question Spend Matters analyst Andrew Karpie explores in his two-part series about "the controversial California Assembly Bill 5 (AB-5) that changes the definition of who is an employee and who is a contractor", available on Spend Matters PRO.

According to Karpie, this is "sending shockwaves through the ecosystem of businesses and workers that constitute the so-called gig economy (that part of the labor market where businesses, including online gig platforms like Uber, engage workers as non-employees). Though California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the bill into law this week and it is slated to take effect January 2020, the future is still uncertain, and the controversy still rages."

Check out both Part 1 and Part 2 of the series.

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