Thought for the month

“It is a general popular error to suppose the loudest complainers for the public to be the most anxious for its welfare.” Edmund Burke, politician (1729 – 97).

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Coal powers the cloud

Last month’s report by Digital Power Group into the electricity used by ICT systems states that global internet, data and cloud systems consume 1500 TW of electricity annually. This is equal to the combined generation of Japan and Germany. The report notes that coal is the world’s single current and future source of electricity. In addition, controversy has been caused by the claim that when taking into account the totality of the network and cloud infrastructure, watching an hour of video weekly on a tablet or smart phone consumes annually more electricity than two new refrigerators.

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