SC: Google can pump drinking water for servers

South Carolina News

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) – South Carolina is allowing Google to cool its servers by pumping nearly 550 million gallons of water annually from a declining aquifer.​​

The State reports the Health and Environmental Control Department approved a groundwater permit on Wednesday that runs through 2023.​​

Google promised to be sustainable and touted its nearly $2 billion investment in the region.​​

But critics said Google shouldn’t be allowed to draw from the dwindling drinking-water supply.​​

Clay Duffie, Mount Pleasant Waterworks manager, said Google should get its water from rivers, not “pristine” groundwater.​​

The Post and Courier reported that the water would flow into the sewage system after cooling the servers. Returning water to an aquifer is costly. But there are alternatives: The National Security Agency cools its massive data center in Maryland with treated wastewater.

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