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We will deal with carbon dating first and then with the other dating methods.Carbon has unique properties that are essential for life on Earth.And some internet companies – such as Facebook, Google and Apple – are leading efforts to be more environmentally responsible.The measures being taken include housing data centres in cold climates – which dramatically reduces the energy needed to cool the facilities – with a ready supply of renewable energy.One way to curb their carbon footprint is to increase the amount of renewable energy they use – a development that is already under way but has much, much further to go to offset the exponential growth in internet traffic, experts say.
This wouldn’t be a problem if these facilities – which range from a small room with a few servers to vast 150,000 square metre “farms” – didn’t consume such enormous amounts of energy.
To put the size of this consumption into even sharper relief – the 416.2 terawatt hours of electricity the world’s data centres used last year was significantly higher than the UK’s total consumption of about 300 terawatt hours.
Massive as data centre energy use may already be, this is nothing to what lies in store, analysts warn.
“The sector is critical to the development of renewable energy.
Along with electric vehicles, data centres are the big risk area for energy demand, because they are growing so fast – whereas energy demand is relatively flat or declining in many areas.
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“If the sector simply grew on its current path without any thought as to where its energy came from, it would become a major contributor to climate change far beyond what it already is.