Facebook owner Meta has paused plans to build a huge data center in the Netherlands.

The facility in Zeewolde gained approval from the local council, but has faced increasing political opposition - including the Dutch Senate voting in favor of reconsidering the project.

The data center would have been the largest in the Netherlands, and one of the largest in Europe. It was set to span five halls and use 200MW.

Zeeworlde data center.png
– Zeewolde Municipality

“We strongly believe in being good neighbors, so from day one of this journey we stressed a good fit between our project and the community is foremost among the criteria we consider when initiating and continuing our development processes,” Meta said in a statement.

“Given the current circumstances, we have decided to pause our development efforts in Zeewolde.”

After the local council approved the project, party Leefbaar (Liveable) Zeewolde ran on a platform of opposition to the data center, citing environmental concerns and a lack of local input. The party recently gained a majority in the municipality.

The Dutch government also in February enacted a nine-month moratorium on permits for data centers larger than 10 hectares. Last June, the Dutch province of Flevoland, where Zeewolde is located, announced it would halt data center developments for an unknown period of time.

Meta said that it would continue to cooperate with the municipality, and may restart the project at a later date.

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