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City of Alameda to Submit Belt Line Railway Lands as Possible Site for Google Nuclear Reactor

Hot on the heels of the City of Alameda’s submission of an application to Google for their Google Fiber for Communities project, the City is rumored to be prepping a new RFI response that would have the former Belt Line Railway land host a planned Google nuclear energy reactor under a new Google “Fusion for Friends” program.

Silicon Valley’s Tech Crunch reported yesterday that under Google’s Green Initiative, Google has developed the technology that would allow them to “build small, mobile and highly efficient nuclear power generators.”

The strategy is consistent with Google’s application to enter the energy trading business, which was approved earlier this year by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The approval grants Google the right to buy and sell wholesale electricity just like an electric utility, such as Alameda Municipal Power. Google’s server farms consume an enormous amount of electricity.

Alameda Shake Map

The City is said to be pitching the Belt Line location because the Bay and estuary surrounding the main island of Alameda provide a natural water containment barrier in the event of a spill of radioactive materials. Additionally, the Belt Line land rests in the area of Alameda least susceptible to liquefaction in the event of an earthquake. The City of Alameda is motivated by the need for revenue for its general fund. Lease rates that Google would pay to the City for use of the land are not yet known.

A local citizens group, Alameda Reacts! is forming to support the proposal.

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