Amazon Web Services (AWS) is set to invest more than AU$13.2 billion (USD $8.9 billion) in its Australian operations over the next five years as it looks to grow its cloud footprint and harness green energy.
Around 80% of the money is said to be heading to the Sydney region, which has been operating since 2012, while the remaining cash will find its way into the recently opened Melbourne region.
Amazon estimated that around 11,000 ‘full-time equivalent’ roles would be generated as part of its expansion, extending beyond company workers to other contractors relating to construction, maintenance, and more.
AWS expands in Australia
As part of the wider Australia and New Zealand market, AWS provides services to numerous educational establishments like the University of Auckland, healthcare providers such as eHealth NSW, government bodies like the Australian Bureau for Statistics and Transport for NSW, and other research and nonprofit organizations.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese noted the importance of cloud providers’ economic and infrastructure investments in jobs and skills. Technology Council of Australia CEO Kate Pounder also welcomed the investment which is hoped to grow the country’s software sector in an era when digital skills are crucial.
Part of its expansion will see Amazon continue to invest in renewable energy as it works towards a 2025 goal of renewable-only energy provision. Currently, the company operates almost 400,000 MWh-worth annually of solar in New South Wales as of last year, and has drawn up plans to get a wind farm up and running in Victoria to the sum of over 700,000MWh per year.
However, this comes at a time when data storage is under growing scrutiny over energy consumption. While green energy is a step in the right direction, some studies suggest reducing consumption is more appropriate with findings that two-fifths of the data stored in the UK could be unwanted.
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