December 2012
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Also In This Issue American Water charges affirmed by NLRB read_more

At long last, Verizon workers ratify pact read_more

Benefits of 'A’ IBEW membership read_more

Alaska’s new wind farm,
at Mt. McKinley read_more

Solar power, Swedish style, at Minn. Ikea read_more

2011 Summary Annual Report for the National Electrical Annuity Plan read_more

Notice to Participants in the National Electrical Annuity Plan: Explanation of Preretirement Surviving Spouse Benefit read_more

North of 49°
Ontario IBEW Refurbishes Canada's Best Known Ships read_more

Au nord du 49° parallèle
En Ontario, des membres de la FIOE remettent en état des navires canadiens célèbresread_more





  Cover Photo

A Data Center Rises in the Desert

For the rest of the country, NSA means the National Security Agency, home of the code warriors and digital spies on the front lines of cyber warfare. For Salt Lake City Local 354, NSA means No Sitting Anymore and a once in a lifetime job putting an entire union back in their boots.

In the desert 25 miles south of Salt Lake City, the NSA is building the $2 billion Utah Data Center. More than a dozen buildings sit on a flat desert plain outside Salt Lake City on an enormous military base, Camp Williams.

James Bamford, author of The Shadow Factory: The Ultra-Secret NSA from 9/11 to the Eavesdropping on America, says the facility will be the central repository for all the electronic intercepts made by the American intelligence community, and Bamford says it is enormous.

"This is the second largest data center in the U.S., maybe in the world," Bamford said. The 100,000-square-foot server warehouse will be cooled by 60,000 tons of HVAC equipment. On-site, there will be a 65-megawatt substation that will use $40 million per year in energy.

And Local 354 is stringing it all together.

Boom Times

Business Manager Rich Kingery expects that by the time the job is finished in 18 months, the data center will represent over a million man-hours.

They will be hooking up thousands of servers, enough to store by Bamford’s estimate the equivalent of 500 quintillion pages of text. That’s 500,000,000,000,000,000,000 pages.

"It will collect information from listening posts, antennas, satellites. The NSA has intercept equipment all over the world looking for any kind of electronic signal, even non-communication signals like radar," Bamford said. "Anything from a cell phone used in Benghazi to a Chinese radar installation." read_more

  Local Lines

Officers Column Hill: Let's Get to Work read_more
Chilia: Our First Job read_more

CircuitsSandy's Toll;
Solar Backpacks Light Up Ind. Youth read_more

LettersA Diversity of Views;
Politics and the
Working Class;
No More Scott Walkers, Please;
… and Now, a Word from Our Sponsors read_more

TransitionsW. Lance Blackstock;
Stanley Hubbard;
Dmytro Halkyn read_more

In MemoriamOctober 2012 read_more

Who We AreAspiring Wireman Apprentice Brings a Veteran's 'Sense of Duty' to the Job Site read_more