Internet search giant Google Inc has invested $38.8 million in two wind farms in North Dakota that generate enough energy to power more than 55,000 homes. The investment in the wind farms, developed by NextEra Energy Resources, is Google's first direct investment in a utility-scale renewable energy project. Google has so far invested in early-stage green start-ups such as solar thermal companies BrightSource Energy and eSolar. "Through this $38.8 million investment, we're aiming to accelerate the deployment of renewable energy in a way that makes good business sense, too," Rick Needham, Google's green business operations manager, wrote in a blogpost. The company said in late 2007 that it would invest in companies and do research of its own to produce affordable renewable energy � at a price less than burning coal � within a few years.