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The Internet search company, which consumes vast amounts of electricity to run the computers in its data centers, created a subsidiary last month called Google Energy. It then applied for approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to be allowed to buy and sell power much like utilities do.
Google said it did not have specific plans to become an energy trader and that its primary goal was to gain flexibility for buying more renewable energy for its power-hungry data centers.
If Google’s application is granted, the company would be able to sell any surplus power that results from these or other initiatives.