645 Matching Annotations
  1. Jun 2022
    1. For example, within the literature on 44data centres, top-down models that project energy use on the basisof increasing demand for internet 45servicestend to predict rapid global energy use growth, (Andrae and Edler 2015; Belkhir and Elmeligi 462018; Liu et al. 2020a),whereas bottom-up models that consider data center technology stocksand their 47energy efficiency trends tend to predict slower but still positive growth (Hintemann and Hinterholzer 482019; Masanet et al. 2020; Shehabi et al. 2018; Malmodin 2020)

      This is a useful passage to refer people to when they tlak about runaway energy usage. It does a fairly good job of explaining that how the different models end up with different trajectories that can either give very scary, or somewhat more mundane projections about the energy use of the sector

  2. Apr 2022
    1. “It is concerning to see a vast majority of companies and investors, including major renewable energy companies, do not have policies expressing zero-tolerance against reprisals in their operations, supply chains and business relationships,”

      What does this language look like?

    1. The sui generis database right grants the database maker the exclusive right of “extraction and/or re-utilization of the whole or of a substantial part”. Extraction is defined as “the permanent or temporary transfer of all or a substantial part of the contents of a database to another medium by any means or in any form”. Re-utilization is defined as “making available to the public” (all quotes from Ref. [14]; Article 7), which refers primarily to online publication. In other words, re-utilization here means “redistribution and online transmission”.12

      I interpret this to mean that if you have invest the time to get sui generis database rights, you get to define if it's published as open data or not, and determine the terms for commercial or non-commercial usage.

  3. Mar 2022
    1. onentially rising ‘frequent driver’ charges could be used to fairly discourage excess car use, without penalising those who really need to drive.

      Oh wow, the frequent flyer levy applied to cars?

    1. Roughly one billion people live with some form of disability. For these people, the advent of the Web was a great step forward in their ability to participate in information exchange.

      One in 8 ppl on earth. What proportion of the global population uses the web?

    2. First, we are deploying DNS-over-HTTPS by default so that only a single party sees the target domain. Second, we require the DNS endpoints in Mozilla's Trusted Recursive Resolver program to legally commit to gathering a limited subset of data only for operational purposes, keeping the data confidential and deleting it promptly

      I wonder if this program might be an interesting place to explorer carbon.txt related ideas.

    3. Safety is a promise, and maintaining it engenders trust and confidence in the Web. Trust in turn enables casual browsing, empowering individuals with unprecedented freedom to explore, and eliminating the need for gatekeepers to decide what may or may not be part of the Web

      this is useful reference in the context of how using something like Metamask as your agent can paint a huge target on your chest

    4. All of this is possible because people have a user agent — the browser — which acts on their behalf. A user agent need not merely display the content the site provides, but can also shape the way it is displayed to better represent the user's interests

      The user agent feels like a fairly special concept for the webby internet. You can have lots of clients, but user agents generally emphasise user autonomy

    5. The Web is also durable. While not absolute, backwards-compatibility is a key principle of the Web: as new capabilities are added (typically as extensions to the core architecture), existing sites are still usable. The end result is that individuals can easily view older content and publishers can keep their content available and consistent over time without needing to recreate it.

      Resiliency as a synonym for durability.

    1. when I look at climate change as as a issue, I look at it as a journalistic issue. I think that it's not been communicated honestly by journalists for a long time. I think that's our main problem. I think that journalists haven't approached climate change with the same level of vigor and ruthlessness that they've covered other political topics. I think it's because for some reason, the fossil fuel industry has convinced them that that there is no corruption to be seen here. There's a reluctance among journalists today to take climate change seriously as a corruption story, which is the heart of what our profession does. And I think that that's harming democracy, because people don't see climate change the way that they should, in the most truthful way.
    1. The Democratic National Committee’s decision on fossil fuel subsidies is a good example of this. As HuffPost’s Alex Kaufman first reported, the DNC recently erased previously-approved language from its party platform calling for an end to fossil fuel tax breaks. The DNC did this without telling anyone, and have so far refused to explain its decision. Why should taxpayers continue to artificially prop up the industry that causes climate change to the tune of at least $20 billion a year? I don’t know, but the DNC prioritizes climate change, OK?
    1. Energy must be just about the most socially conservative – no, I will use the correct word, backward – industry in the world. At times it seems as if the main criterion for leadership is to be a straight white male, born between 1950 and 1965. This is starting to change, but not fast enough. Women are disproportionately disadvantaged by energy poverty, bearing the extra workload and health impacts of cooking with traditional biomass. Access to modern energy is essential for women to enjoy basic healthcare, particularly during childbirth, and for girls to have time to study1. Gender in the energy sector is not just a question of fairness, it is also a question of effectiveness. Women may hold up half the sky, but more importantly they also buy half the world’s appliances, half the world’s energy and half the world’s cars – and, if they do not, they should and soon will. They are a huge part of the market the energy industry needs to understand. Women also offer half the world’s talent. There is a growing body of work showing that those companies that have diverse management teams and boards outperform those that do not.
    2. Clean energy is inherently more local, more distributed, more accountable. While Germany’s big four utilities own the bulk of the fossil and nuclear generating capacity, they own only a small proportion of its renewable energy capacity; the general public owns many gigawatts of the latter either directly or via retail funds. Some may find wind farms ugly, some may find them beautiful; either way, they make us talk about the trade-offs we are making to generate electricity. In the past, there were no discussions about the relative aesthetics of open-cast coal mines and gas fields in far-away countries.
    3. There is, however, a third level on which the struggle between defenders of clean and fossil energy must be understood, and that is in terms of the social structures in which we want to live. Fossil-based energy lends itself to scale and centralization. Physical centralization – huge oil, gas and coal-fields, massive power stations, a universal grid, pipelines, refineries and the like – as well as the inevitable fellow-travellers of political and economic centralization.
    4. In 1995, when Saro-Wiwa was judicially murdered, I felt helpless. Now, however, I do not. Back then it was impossible to envisage a different world. Back then, health, wealth and happiness were inextricably linked to fossil fuels and their attendant corrupt, corrosive centralization of power. Now we know another way is possible. Back then I was a news industry executive, now I am playing my bit part as the world moves from old energy to new.
  4. Feb 2022
    1. While some of the most advanced, “hyperscale” data centers, like those maintained by Google, Facebook, and Amazon, have pledged to transition their sites to carbon-neutral via carbon offsetting and investment in renewable energy infrastructures like wind and solar, many of the smaller-scale data centers that I observed lack the resources and capital to pursue similar sustainability initiatives

      Access to capital

    1. It’s not a lack of science that’s driving the climate crisis, it’s a lack of democracy.

      This is a really nice framing of the issue - and if you can talk about democracy as a mechanism for considering the needs of more than just the powerful, it's a nice companion to the "it's not about energy, it's about power" quotes when people talk about green energy or tech

    1. Before the pandemic, aviation accounted for 7% of UKgreenhouse gas emissions, with emissions from the sectorhaving increased by 88% since 1990. Yet just 15% of people in4the UK take 70% of all the flights, while around half of peopledon’t fly at all each year.

      Yikes. 70% of that 7% of UK emissions is coming from just 15% of the people flying.

    2. Thiscost is of the same scale as the aviation industry’s £7 bnexemption from fuel tax and zero-rating for VAT each yearbefore Covid, and shows the scale of environmental andsocial benefits that could be achieved by directing aviation’stax breaks into more productive areas.

      Ah, so that's how it works. Instead the going to a tax giveaway for aviation, the money goes into RnD and training.

    3. However, this study makesclear that, at the level of the UK economy, it is worse for jobnumbers, as well as for the climate, to maintain thepre-Covid status quo of high aviation emissions, frequentlyunaffordable train travel and a large tourism spendingdeficit

      This framing is SO ballsy - I love it - they invert the usual narrative.

    4. even prior to the impacts of theCovid crisis on the aviation industry, it had a pattern ofdeclining jobs supported per passenger, requiring ongoingdemand growth in order to sustain employment

      Was is this global? Or the just the UK?

    5. The disruption to the aviation industrycaused by the Covid crisis, along with industry’s failure toprioritise protecting jobs, shows the harsh impacts on workingpeople of an abrupt, unmanaged drop in demand without aplan in place to protect workers, or sufficient care for theirjobs or livelihoods

      Thinking of United And American airlines here



    1. until 2030 (date of approval of construction permit), and where renewables are not available at sufficient scale, direct emissions are below 270gCO2e/kWh or, for the activity of electricity generation, their annual direct GHG emissions must not exceed an average of 550kgCO2e/kW of the facility's capacity over 20 years. In this case, the activity must meet a set of cumulative conditions: e.g. it replaces a facility using solid or liquid fossil fuels, the activity ensures a full switch to renewable or low-carbon gases by 2035, and a regular independent verification of compliance with the criteria is carried out.

      Sure this includes ALL gas?

    2. The European Commission tabled its proposals based on robust evidence: the Fit for 55 Package rests on a common analytical base with energy system modelling at its core. According to the scenarios in this modelling, natural gas will continue to play an important role in terms of consumption and generation until 2030, after which we expect a decline to 2050. Throughout the transition of our energy system, the function of natural gas-fired electricity generation will change and will increasingly be a facilitator for the spread of renewable electricity and stable supply.

      Which models would they be? Are they open to scrutiny?

    3. by 31 December 2035.

      5 years after the 2030 target of reducing emissions by half

    1. Part of the challenge here is that researchers have been socialized in academia to be apolitical or to think of themselves as scientists and not as people who have values imbued into the work that they’re doing. That is also part of the problem that we’re trying to contend with around the making of these technologies that are also allegedly neutral and just tools. This is part of the reason why we need feminists and why we need people who are committed and connected to social movements around the world to contextualize our work and to make sense of what it’s working in service of. That’s really important. 

      "I'm just a developer."

    1. ExxonMobil appears to be caught between denying that it is in possession of information on flood risk to its Mystic River site – opening it up to charges of negligence (or worse if evidence to the contrary emerges) – and admitting knowledge, but being found to have breached its duty of care to employees, investors and local residents by failing to act on it. If ExxonMobil loses, it will be forced to invest considerable sums in flood protection at Mystic River, but the implications could have much wider implications across almost all energy, industrial and real estate companies.

      It's negligent on your fiduciary responsibility to avoid the risks of climate change - you are less likely to be covered by insurers. If you know and do nothing you breach a duty of care to staff and local community

    2. The District Court found in favor of the plaintiffs, based on Article 21 of the Dutch Constitution, which states: “It shall be the concern of the authorities to keep the country habitable and to protect and improve the environment.”

      It was the constitution that was the pivotal point!

    1. Video streaming is a particularly prominent driver in data traffic. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Netflix agreed with EU regulators to reduce their traffic and ease the load on the network, allowing network provision for homeworkers.25 Belkhir (personal communication) pointed out that this agreement between Netflix and EU regulators makes it difficult to argue that data traffic is independent of ICT infrastructure growth and therefore that data traffic has little effect on emissions.

      Was this for optics, or did the data back it up?

      If it imposes little cost to Netflix (and probably reduces the costs AWS might charge them for egress anyway), then it seems like an easy thing to agree too.

      It would be easier than explain how networks work to journalists and policymakers, as it can be so counter intuitive .

  5. Jan 2022
    1. Andrae and Edler3Anders S.G.A. Edler T. On global electricity usage of communication technology: trends to 2030.Challenges. 2015; 6: 117-157Crossref Google Scholar and Belkhir and Elmeligi7Belkhir L. Ahmed E. Assessing ICT global emissions footprint: trends to 2040 & recommendations.J. Clean. Prod. 2018; 177: 448-463Crossref Scopus (168) Google Scholar both agree that data traffic is a driver in ICT growth and emissions. Growth in the internet's infrastructure capacity allows for new data-intensive services and applications; these offer more affordances to users, driving demand for the services and therefore further infrastructure growth.24Preist C. Schien D. Blevis E. Understanding and mitigating the effects of device and cloud service design decisions on the environmental footprint of digital infrastructure.in: Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. 2016: 1324-1337Crossref Scopus (53) Google Scholar Peak data traffic is one driver for this infrastructure growth due to increased demand for data-intensive services; other influences include ensuring technology is always accessible to all users (Preist, personal communication).

      This makes the argument that increased data usage leads to increases of emissions from other parts of the sector, like being a driver of more compute being used, more devices and so on.

      This is makes for a better mental model - you could compare it to how increased footfall results in more commercial activity with shops and so on.

  6. Dec 2021
    1. Figures 5 and 6 show some trends for the synthesis per contributing category in 2020 and 2030, separately. Andrae and Edler [3] is compared to the present update.

      This appears to be the basis of the 1884 TWh figure

      Devices - use 1039 Fixed access network - use 171 Wireless (3G,4G, 5G,) - use 98 Data centre use 299 Production 381 TOTAL 1988

    2. Fixed access wired networks 0.07 (171/2444)

      This seems to be the only mention of 2444 Exabytes I can find in this paper

    3. Andrae and Edler [3] arrived at an accumulated improvement factor of 0.083 in 2030 for 5G by assuming 22% improvement between 2010 and 2022 and 5% improvement from 2022 to 2030. However, it is wrong to assume an improvement for 5G from 2010 to 2020 as 5G did not (more or less) exist then. Due to gradually introduced Moore's law problems, the accumulated improvement factor is assumed to be 0.229 in 2030. On top of this, a gradually waning Moore's law is introduced for all mobile technology Gs from 2022 so that the improvement factors run from 19% in 2022 to 5% in 2030, instead of 5% from 2022 to 2030. This leads to more than 4 times more TWh from 5G in the latest understanding mentioned in [12] than in [3]. Tables 2 and 3 show some of the new assumptions.

      If you have an idea of production volume, it might make sense to apply Wright's law instead of Moore's law.

    4. Use stage power of consumer devices (including Wi-Fi modems) is now at some 50% of ICT total power use but is ideally expected to decrease thanks to advanced power saving features.

      This seems much higher than portable and handheld consumer devices, but the dataset includes TVs and other kit

    5. Another angle to be analyzed further is that as web page sizes increase, the metrics Page Load Time and Page Render Time have larger impact on energy usage on the client side [31].

      This is the first time I've seen a paper refer to the client side rendering of pages as a factor

    1. According to (Cisco 2020), the worldwide Internet data traffic for 2020 was around 254 EB/month,corresponding to 3048 EB (or 3.05 zettabytes, ZB) yearly.

      Assuming the SWD model is following the same approach as the paper it references, and the historical data numbers, I think it would make sense to use this number rather than 2444.

    2. Reasonable estimates for 2020 are: E (WAN) = 110 TWh, E (FAN) = 130 TWh, and E (RAN) =100 TWh, EI (WAN) = 0.02 kWh/GB, EI (FAN) = 0.07 kWh/GB, and EI (RAN) = 0.2 kWh/GB.

      These numbers equate to:

      • EI (WAN) = 0.02 kWh/GB - core networks like internet - backbones
      • EI (FAN) = 0.07 kWh/GB - fibre & DSL including the wifi routers in the home / office
      • EI (RAN) = 0.2 kWh/GB - cellular networks like 4G, 5G
    3. While Cisco foresaw an average annual growth rate of 26% for the entire IP trafficover the period 2017-2022 (Cisco 2018), it foresaw an average annual growth rate of 46% for theglobal RAN traffic over the same period (Cisco 2019). As a consequence, the share of radio access iscontinuously increasing, from just 1% in 2010 to over 16% today (see Figure 5)

      In 2020, the split is about %16 mobile vs 84% fixed access.

      You might not use these for the web tho, as so much computer to computer transfer is only fixed to fixed

    4. According to (Aslan et al. 2018), the energy intensity of the Internet has decreased onaverage by 30% per year. This corresponds to a halving over 2 years, and to a reduction by a factor of30 over a decade.

      Over the same period solar has come down in price at around 20% per year

    5. To compute the overall energy consumption of the Internet in the US, both (Gupta and Singh 2003)and (Koomey et al. 2004) start their analysis from a detailed inventory of computing and networking

      For the last twenty years we have had almost 10x differences in expected energy use figures



    1. Annual End User Traffic: 2444 EB

      I'm having a hard time finding this number in the sources cited. I'll add a comment here when I do.

    1. Instead of using a managed service, we’ve chosen to build expertise in-house, treating outages as unscheduled learning opportunities rather than reasons to fear Kafka.

      I am stealing "Unscheduled learning opportunies"

    1. Supplier must publicly disclose its Scope 1 Emissions, Scope 2 Emissions, and Scope 3 Emissions within twelve (12) months of the Effective Date.

      Must publicly disclose

    2. Without affecting any other right or remedy available to it, SFDC may terminate the Agreement by giving one (1) month written notice to Supplier if the Supplier’s environmental practices or negative environmental impacts, in SFDC’s reasonablediscretion, could have a material negative impact on SFDC’s reputation as a result of conflicting with SFDC’s published sustainability, carbon reduction, and renewable energy targets.

      Holy balls - anyone sellling to SFDC agree to a month month kill clause if they're caught doing stuff that would have a material impact on SFDC's reputation?

    3. publicly disclose that Supplier has incorporated the Sustainability Exhibit into an agreement with SFDC

      Ahhh! So this, if you squint, is a bit like the "publish the license" aspect of OSS licenses like MIT, Apache 2 and the rest.

    4. Supplier must maintain a Sustainability Scorecard and if requested by SFDC, provide a copy of such Sustainability Scorecard to SFDC on an annual basis promptly following Supplier’s receipt of a Sustainability Scorecard from Supplier’s Sustainability Scorecard provider. For purposes of this section: “Sustainability Scorecard” means a corporate social responsibility assessment report prepared by a reputable provider that is reasonably acceptable to SFDC.

      This sustainability score card:

      corporate social responsibility assessment report prepared by a reputable provider

    5. Supplier agrees to (i) review and share with its relevant subcontractors SFDC’s relevant sustainability best practices guidance within ten (10) businessdays of SFDC providing such guidelines to Supplier and (ii) use commercially reasonable efforts to comply, and cause its relevant subcontractors to comply, with SFDC’s relevant sustainability best practices guidance.

      Ah, so this is the cascading mechanism in effect here. This is what we tried back in 2011 with AMEE, but we didn't think about using contract law as a lever in this way - ours all about implicit pressure from the big supplier we were working with

    6. 2.2.3.To verify the Products and/or Services were provided on a Carbon Neutral Basis, Supplier agrees to provide SFDC with (i) a Carbon Neutrality Attestation no later than January 15 of each year and (ii) each Emissions Report no later than sixty (60) days after the expiration of the applicable Emissions Reporting Period, in each case in form and substance reasonably satisfactory to SFDC. Supplier will use commercially reasonable efforts to promptly respond to any inquiries or requests for clarification from SFDC related to any Carbon Neutrality Attestation or Emissions Report.

      LOL, this is basically what we asked for when they got in touch with us. If the language here is in the TCLP clauses, then it might be worth adopting in our T's and C's too

    7. “Carbon Neutrality Fee” means (i) with respect to Supplier’s failure to deliver the Products and/or Services on a Carbon Neutral Basis, an amount equal to the cost of carbon credits that must be purchased to offset each metric ton of CO2e that the Total Emissions, as stated in a given Emissions Report or as reasonably determined by SFDC, exceed zer

      Wow, so this shifts the carbon neutralitry burden to the supplier, so SFDC can reasonably expect their scope 3 emissions from this supplier to be zero?

    8. Supplier represents and warrants that (i) Supplierhas operated in material compliance with all Environmental Laws, (ii) Supplier has not received written notice of material violation of Environmental Law with respect to the Products and/or Services or Supplier has remediated any material violations of Environmental Law for which it has received notice, and (iii) Supplier has provided SFDC with reasonable detail of all environmental practices or negative environmental impacts, that, in SFDC’s reasonable discretion, could have a material negative impact on SFDC’s reputation as a result of conflicting with SFDC’s published sustainability, carbon reduction, or renewable energy targets

      Ahh… this is interesting - it's essentially compelling the supplier to make a statement that that they're not breaking any environmental laws

    9. if Supplier has not already set a science-based target,and shall promptly provide a copy of the Plan to SFDC on request. For purposes of this section: “Carbon Footprint” means the amount of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions (CO2e) that will be released into the atmosphere as a result of the provision of the Products and/or Services, determined in accordance with international carbon reporting practice, being the accepted practice from time to time in relation to reporting for the purposes of the protocols to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

      Note to follow up - these plans might not be public, but this implies that they might used as for inter-org comms

    10. one-half of one percent (0.5%) of the aggregate amount paid by SFDC to Supplier or invoiced by Supplier to SFDC over the prior twelve (12) months.

      So a 100k project amounts to a 500 fee for non compliance

    11. “Climate Deficiency” means (i) a material breach of Section 2.2(Carbon Neutrality; Climate Reporting)of the Sustainability Exhibit (if applicable) or (ii) any other material breach of this Sustainability Exhibit.

      This is a new term for me, and I wonder if it's in the TCLP clauses or coming from SFDC

    1. Distribution of solar, uranium, and oil densities across nations. Data are from EIA (2019) for oil; OECD (2019) for uranium; UNdata (2019) for area; and OpenEI (2019) for solar illumination. The x- and y-axes share the same logarithmic scaling. Countries with land area below 5000 km2 are not included.

      Nice! These are the underlying sources of data for the image shared on twitter

  7. Nov 2021
    1. We assume that the multi-week lulls in variable renewable energy outputs possible in some regions ofthe world are broadly representative of all global regions. In the Fast and Slow Transition scenarioswe therefore specify that there must be enough P2X fuel stored to cover one month’s worth of end-useelectricity each year, everywhere. This length of reduced output is not likely in all regions, so providingenough P2X fuel to cover global final electricity for this length of time is likely excessively conservative.

      This sounds incredibly expensive, but I have no real intuition for what this would be in absolute terms.


    1. A review of the literature on oil market elasticities has concluded that a one barrel increase in oil supply leads to a roughly half-barrel increase in global oil consumption (with broad uncertainties).[86] A reasonable range for this “displacement factor” runs from 0.2 to 0.8 barrels consumed for each additional barrel produced.[

      Ah, so this is where the figure might have been revised down from the figure just burning 50k barrels a day.

    2. As discussed above, this represents approximately 5% of ExxonMobil’s anticipated Permian oil production in that year and could add as much as 3.4 million metric tons of carbon into the atmosphere by 2025

      Oh so it wasn't per year, after all. It's over 5 years, so I think this is 680,000 tonnes of CO2 each year instead, of 3.4m tonnes each year.

    3. In addition to specific machine learning contracts for managing upstream datasets, all three cloud companies are part of the Open Group Open Subsurface Data Universe™ (OSDU) Forum, an international group of oil and gas operators, including Shell, Chevron, Schlumberger, ExxonMobil, Total, BP, ConocoPhillips and Devon Energy, that aims to build an open data platform for the oil and gas industry.

      I guess this is the opposite of Open Data for Good, right?

    1. Litigation could also develop into a tool for vulnerable states to hold the nations and companies they deem responsible for climate change to account. In 2018, Vanuatu foreign minister Ralph Regenvanu revealed his island nation was considering suing fossil fuel companies.

      Would working to increase extraction open you up to liability in the same way?

      Note: look up if fossil fuel companies included companies providing support services same fossil fuel companies

    2. Increasingly robust climate science, combined with the emerging field of extreme weather attribution, have given litigation a boost in recent years, Lydia Omuko-Jung, a climate change lawyer and research fellow at the University of Graz, tells Carbon Brief. Another key development has been the so-called “rights turn” in climate litigation. In 2015, a judge in the Lahore High Court, Pakistan, became the first ever to find that the government’s delay in implementing its climate policies violated citizens’ fundamental rights.

      Basic human rights as the lever

    3. “Climate justice groups were saying: hold on, that’s just not true, because if that was true we would also have solved inequality, poverty and all of these things. You are failing to understand that this is not an environmental issue, it’s fundamentally an economic and political issue.”

      It feels pretty hard to argue with this line of reasoning after reading this far through this monster piece

    4. Supporters of the Paris Agreement argue that such concessions were necessary to produce a successful deal. Moreover, former US climate negotiator Todd Stern has written in Brookings that legally binding targets, “paradoxically, can yield weaker action as some countries low-ball their targets for fear of legal liability”.

      So the argument he's making is that countries wouldn't set such ambitious targets if they knew they might be sued for not delivering on them?

    5. At the Durban COP in 2011, nations agreed to forge ahead with a new deal that, unlike Kyoto, would be “applicable to all” nations, both “developing” and “developed”. The EU’s lead negotiator, Elina Bardram, said it “must reflect today’s reality and evolve as the world does”, while US lead negotiator Todd Stern stated their position plainly: “If equity is in, we are out.”

      “If equity is in, we are out.” Wow

    6. Di-Aping suggested “one Africa, one degree” as a rallying cry.

      Man, this is hard to read

    7. The map below shows the results of their most recent study (pdf). “Climate risk index” is mapped for most countries in the world – where a lower score and darker colouring indicates that the country has greater exposure and vulnerability to extremes.

      Why such a high risk outlier in Western Europe?

    8. One study finds that in more than 70% of US counties, “neighborhoods with lower-income and higher shares of non-white residents experience significantly more extreme surface urban heat than their wealthier, whiter counterparts”. Another study has found that black people are 52% more likely than white people to live in areas of unnatural “heat risk-related land cover”. Asian people are 32% more likely and Hispanics 21%.

      Check if there is any overlap between these counties and common datacentres clusters

    9. For example, in June of this year, the city of Jacobabad in Pakistan reached 52C, pushing it over the 35C wet bulb temperature limit. This made the city one of only two places on earth to have officially passed the threshold. The Daily Telegraph reported that the extreme heat was exacerbated by the lack of wealth and resources in the region

      holy shit. it's already here?

    10. “To actively promote such fossil-fuel development and then punish developing countries for emissions through carbon border adjustments is, at best, hypocritical. It’s also unjust.”

      Ah ok.

      So you lend money to build fossil infra, then you make it hard to buy stuff made with the infra compared to your own clean infra supply chain.

      the result is the person you lend money to losing out, as they only ever get finance for fossil fuel infra, and can never compete

    11. This is why carbon border adjustments of the variety being proposed by the EU, which place taxes on imported goods based on the emissions associated with their production, have been criticised and even labelled a form of “economic imperialism”.

      A CBAM (carbon border adjustment mechanism) as a form of economic imperialism? I've heard of protectionism, but I hadn't considered that take.

    12. One study found that most European countries would be unable to meet their removal targets domestically, meaning they would have to rely on climate finance or offsetting schemes to support removals abroad.


    13. “The closer we get to 1.5C…the question becomes less about fair shares in terms of greenhouse gas mitigation and more about fair shares in terms of CO2 removal as well.”

      This might be a framing around the carbon colonialism thing - you only get to do negative emissions if they're domestic ones.

      Given how much energy DAC needs, you likely still end up with domestic investment in clean power, so there's still a material footprint

    14. In the UK, the Climate Change Committee has advised that the nation should meet its net-zero target domestically, “without relying on international carbon units”.

      This is directly in contradiction with basically every climateTech firm I can think of in the UK right now

    15. However, once again the pushback is largely based on the extent to which these targets rely on offsets and carbon removals at the perceived expense of emissions cuts, particularly if the effort is shifted to the global south in acts of “carbon colonialism”.

      Carbon colonialism is a new term for me.

    16. In 2004, academics and NGOs signed the Durban Declaration on Carbon Trading, which criticised the way in which markets turned “the earth’s carbon-cycling capacity into property to be bought or sold in a global market”. This became a key foundational text for climate justice groups.

      Oh jeez, there's just so much to read

    17. Criticisms were levelled at the Kyoto Protocol after the US pushed for the inclusion of a carbon market in the agreement.

      I did not know they pushed for the carbon market, but it makes sense. If you have a market based instrument that you can make cheaper than action, it'll be politically attractive, as it means you don't need to change so much

    18. Harjeet Singh, a senior adviser on climate impacts at CAN International, tells Carbon Brief that it is clear why wealthy nations want to avoid admitting responsibility: “The numbers are massive and rich countries and corporations know that they are going to be blamed and that’s why they have always been scared of recognising loss and damage and the related compensation and liability provision.”

      Note to self, check this against this:


    19. Separately, the concept of “loss and damage” has been developed in a bid to generate support for unavoidable or unpredictable climate impacts that cannot be adapted to. 

      So that's what the loss and damage twitter account was all about:


    20. With the UNEP adaptation gap report suggesting that adaptation costs “in developing countries alone” could reach $140-300bn in 2030, there are widespread calls for at least half of climate finance to go towards adaptation. This echoes language in the Paris Agreement urging a “balance between adaptation and mitigation” finance.

      Half / half.

      Useful reference as typically adaptation is often presented as a way to excuse inaction, or generally seen as an admission of defeat

    21. Most climate finance also comes in the form of loans

      Given interest rates are hovering around 0% what kind of rates are offered here? Cost of capital for renwables projects in the global south is notoriously high compared to the global north.

    22. “What we are asking is repayment…We are not begging for aid. We want developed countries to comply with their obligation and pay their debt.”

      That's a pretty powerful framing that with the "carbon space" concept

    23. Its analysis suggests that a top 1% earner – someone earning over $109,000 (£80,000) per year – will need to cut their personal emissions by 97% to reach a “fair share” level by 2030, in line with the 1.5C target, indicated by the purple line.

      compare this to the salaries listed on:


      Or in the UK: https://www.itjobswatch.co.uk/

      I STILL don't know the equivalent for Europe

    24. This is recognised in the Bali Principles of Climate Justice, developed by NGOs in 2002, which note that “unsustainable consumption exists primarily in the north, but also among elites within the south”. Indian journalist Praful Bidwai has described the focus on national per capita emissions as “a shield that enables India’s elite to hide behind the poor”.

      "A shield to hide behind the poor." Crikey Moses.

    25. For example, in its most recent update, Climate Action Tracker (CAT) – an independent analysis of climate pledges produced by two research organisations – deemed both India and China’s commitments to be “highly insufficient” based on their “fair shares”.

      Ah, the other Climate Action T - org. These say that even China and India aren't doing enough based on the fair shares

    26. National pledges as of 2018 expressed in CO2e per capita emissions cuts (black lines), compared to different “fairness” benchmarks. Orange bars are based on national capacity alone. Blue bars are based on national historical responsibility alone. Green bars reflect both capacity and responsibility equally. The grey bar represents a “political” benchmark based on low progressivity and low responsibility settings. Bright colours represent a “high progressivity” setting and dim colours represent a “low progressivity” setting. Source: Civil Society Review.

      This took me a while to make sense of but the simple version is that where a bar is higher than the black line, there is capacity to do more, but the countries are not. The closer the bars are to the line the closer the efforts are to the "fair" share

    27. Concerns about intergenerational injustices, demonstrated more recently by the Fridays for Future protests, are one of the “four pillars of climate justice” identified by Srivastava and her colleagues in a recent paper. The others are: Distributional – how the costs and benefits of climate change and action are shared.Procedural – ensuring the processes for making decisions about the impacts of and responses to climate change are fair, accountable and transparent.Recognition – Recognising differences between groups in how they experience climate change and their right to express these differences.

      Aaaaah! There's 4 not 3! There's an EXPLICIT reference to intergenerational justice too.

      Note to self: always listen to Melissa.

    28. Using the same methodology, which prioritises nations’ historical responsibility and financial capacity to act, the US branch of Climate Action Network (CAN) has called for a “fair share” target of cutting US emissions by 195% below 2005 levels by 2030. NGOs in the UK have called for a similar reduction target of 200% below 1990 levels.  The current domestic targets for the US and the UK are 50-52% and 68%, respectively.

      Wow, I this piece if eye opening - I had no idea the "fair shares" were that much larger

    29. many fairness justifications used in NDCs, such as allocating emissions cuts where it is cheapest to do so, relied on arguments that were not supported by principles of international law. Sticking to these legal principles would tend to require deeper cuts from developed countries, the paper found.

      I didn't know legal principles would follow this.

    1. The work done must be measured and must be part of a pre-existing environmental strategy.

      This implies uniformity in how you report it. If you have an attributional approach for measuring impact at an organisational level, you'll need a way to convert between the two if you are using a consequential method for a project.

  8. Oct 2021
    1. Organizations today typically must assess their spending records and then look up tables that estimate the average emissions associated with them. This falls far short of what the world really needs, which is the ability to pull accurate and near real-time data directly from the emissions sources themselves.

      OK, so this suggests they're intending to eventually replace the extended environmental input output models that are the defaults in most carbon accounting tools with their own models.

      My guess is this would be their moat in many cases.

    1. To obtain the best set of data, we commissioned two active telecom sites in Peru. One is the baseline site that uses conventional telecom sizing and operational methodology. The other is a smartly designed site that uses fewer solar panels and batteries. By commissioning these two sites side by side, we can compare their performance over time and track relevant telecom performance indicators, such as number of connections, bandwidth, and reliability. We believe that significant savings in power costs — on the order of 40 percent to 60 percent — are possible while maintaining relevant telecom performance.

      Wow, so actively managing demand effectively HALVED the energy requirements, although it's not obvious what "while maintaining relevant telecom performance" means, as the diagram above basically suggests dropping down to 3G or 2G when power is low.

    2. Conventional telecom power system sizing of a solar-powered site is based on (1) the worst-case historic irradiance in the installation site, which can be much worse than the average irradiance, and (2) the average power consumption of the telecom system, which typically remains static and invariable over the time, no matter how the weather is and even when most of the people are sleeping and the traffic is close to zero.

      So a key thing here is that earlier thinking assumes static load the entire time. There is no real notion of scaling power usage up and down when designing the system

    3. One of our most recent collaborations is Project SEISMIC: Smart Energy Infrastructure for Mobile Internet Connectivity. In this project, we are developing a solution to smartly manage the power and functionality of telecom sites. For example, we can reduce the capacity and transmission power of the site during less busy periods. By doing so, we want to better design and operate off-grid sites in order to reduce cost and improve their sustainability.

      As I understand this piece is about better power management for sites that are off the power grid, for providing connectivity

    1. Table 2 - Energy efficiencies of mobile networks

      These figures are quite a bit higher than the ones from Ericsson, and even from the IEA's analysis - they assume between 0.1 and 0.2 , and this is 0.35 for 4G

    2. Therefore, we take the 17% of app traffic associated with ATS found by Vallina-Rodriguez et al., (2016) as an upper boundary, also because in some video apps lots of advertisements are shown, and as a lower boundary we assume 10%, to use a conservative range for the carbon footprint of unwanted data-use.

      So, they assume between 1/6th and 1/10th of total transfer is unwanted ad-traffic.

    3. We assumed that the electricity use is distributed all over Europe. In the calculation we used the actual European electricity grid mix from 2019.

      OK this is good. The average grid mix might be a tad high if it isn't a weighted average, as I don't think internet usage and penetration is uniform across Europe. America, then the UK, and then Germany are the largest English speaking markets online, IIRC, so it might be worth looking at how this might affect the carbon intensity used per kilowatt hour of electricity

    4. To compensate for 3 to 8 Mt CO2 emissions, 160 to 410 million trees need to grow for one year or between 60 and 150 million PV panels need to be installed to replace the average European electricity production.

      There are other stats that show the mortality from excess emissions, often used to show that airliners end up causing numbers of deaths that if taken into account, would ground them based on their own safety standards

    5. This analysis results in an estimated total carbon footprint of ATS data-use in Europe of between 5 and 14 Mt CO2-eq. per year. The carbon footprint of unwanted data-use by ATS is estimated to be between 3 and 8 Mt CO2-eq. per year. This is comparable to the CO2 emissions of 0.7 to 1.8 1,000 MW coal-fired powerplants, the CO2 emissions of European cities such as Turin or Lisbon, or the CO2 emissions of 370 to 950 thousand European citizens.

      So, almost a million Europeans

    6. In this study we define the unwanted data-use by smartphone apps as the network data (both cellular and Wi-Fi) used to transfer the data collected by third-party advertisement and tracking services (ATS) in smartphone apps to the third-party servers. As approximately 60% of the consumers indicate that they would turn off third-party tracking, 60% of the network data used by ATS is qualified as unwanted.

      So this is where the 60% figure comes from, for later reference

    7. Smartphone apps collect more user data (also called tracking) than most consumers prefer. Besides privacy risks, the collection of user data also results in a carbon footprint as sending this user data to third parties and showing personalised advertisements consumes network data. When the user tracking is unwanted, also the consumption of network data for tracking is unwanted.

      Another way of framing this might be shifting the cost of the web onto everyone else affected by our changing climate.



    1. This is the result of using high and outdated energy-use assumptions for various access modes – for example, 0.9 kWh/GB for “mobile” compared to more recent peer-reviewed estimates of 0.1-0.2 kWh/GB for 4G mobile in 2019.

      These numbers are less than half the Delft University ones

    1. The German National Action Plan (NAP) on business and human rights sets out the expectation for at least 50% of German companies with more than 500 employees to have introduced effective human rights due diligence measures into their business processes by 2020. According to its coalition agreement, the Government has committed to taking legal action if this target is not reached. As part of a monitoring process the Government is currently reviewing to what extent companies are meeting their due diligence obligations.On 10 July 2019 the Federal Foreign Office published the first interim report, outlining the methodology and the questionnaire for the 2019 survey. NGOs, media and parliamentarians criticized in particular the inclusion of additional evaluation groups 'Companies with implementation plan' and 'Companies on the right track' (BHRRC translation) as well as the current failure to consider 'non-responders'.

      wow, I was late to the party - I didn't know the threshold was so low for having this

    1. On every execution, the Function node compares the incoming data with the data from the previous execution. If the data got changed, we pass it to the next node in the workflow. We also update the static data with this new data so that the next execution knows what data gets stored in the previous node. If the data did not get changed, you may return a message based on our use-case.

      A-ha! If you can use this to set a 'bookmark' for the latest row in a spreadsheet/CSV for example, you have a nice way to query for "all the things since when I last ran this last Sunday"

    1. Ensuring that the regional market is competitive and that there are incentives for companies to buy local cloud infrastructure is a role that only government actors can fulfill. Moreover, it is a responsibility that is clearly within their mandate. Not coincidentally, such an approach clearly aligns with the European Commission’s and some European Union member state governments’ laudable competition and antitrust strategies, echoing attempts to safeguard the European market and uphold strong values throughout the EU.

      This is literally the opposite of how it works right now, with some procurement specifying AWS

    2. Such a subsidy can be aimed effectively, not at the cloud provider itself, but at companies undertaking a digital transformation or startups, giving them the freedom to choose any local provider and receiving cloud credits from their regional government. These credits are then spent locally, lifting and strengthening the local IT and digital ecosystem.

      So, basically providing access to the same capital that the cloud giants have, but raised from taxation?

    1. It’s true! None of these tactics, on their own, will address complex, deep-rooted social problems. But each of them represents a potential pathway that we can ascend when other routes are blocked.

      Useful framing in the syllabus.

      We have some idea of the goals, and talking in terms of methods provides options to suite the context

  9. Sep 2021
    1. With Amazon the sole customer of the substation it will (via Oppidan) pay for the 26 month-long design and construction process, with the exception of the City-owned control building. It is expected to cost $5,388,260 across three payment milestones, one of which has already been paid.After it is built, property rights will transfer over to SVP, which will operate and maintain the substation.

      OK. so it's not so much a substation owned like a block box.But Amazon is the sole customer, and it likely bought the site so :

      a) it would stop others making a datacentre there b) it could then make use of the substation, and providing extra distribution for the other DCs it wants to operate and use so it can expand further

    1. This verticalization will have the great flaw of making the real consumption of these infrastructures invisible. Today we can still retrieve some data from water and energy providers but when Amazon builds its own substations, like in Santa Clara, or Google its own pumping stations then the black box will continue to grow.

      I had no idea Amazon is building its own substations.

    2. At the environmental level, the territorial approach makes it possible to get out of the mystique of relative efficiency values to align consumption in absolute value with a local stock and a precise environment.

      Absolutt comsumption as a percentage of the local resources would be a huge jump forward here

    3. However, the possible unsustainability of the new data center project was outweighed by an $800 million project with various financial benefits to the community, so the construction project was voted 6-1 in the city council.

      It's worth comparing this to other water reservations for context. Comparing it to agriculture in the same area might help, to see the choices people are facing

    4. It also raises the point that data centers could crowd out renewable energy capacity on the grid, slowing down the country's energy transition.

      I think the arguent made here is that the load can exceed the generation coming from renewable sources, meaning that this would end up leading to more dirty power coming online to meet the demand.

      The alternative might be to adjust demand, with the virtual capacity curves proposed in the google paper,and supplemen that with storage

    5. Energy used in a mine, in freight, in the supply and production chain is much less likely to be renewable.

      It's worth considering things like how a CBAM a carbon border adjustment mechanism might affect this, as it's designed specifically to address this issue of high carbon intensity goods crossing country or trading block borders, like the EU

    6. The US giant advertises that its data center in Eemshaven in the Netherlands would be 100% powered by RE since its opening in 2016. However, on Google's electricity supply matrices we can clearly see that 69% of the electricity supply was provided by RE. The remaining 31% is offset by RECs or virtual PPAs. Google's statement in the preamble is therefore not factually correct.

      These might still be offset by RECs that are tied to a specific point in time, sometimes referred to as TEACS.

    7. Google seems to be in the best position to obtain or bring about direct APPs.

      PPAs presumably

    8. In this scientific literature, it is estimated that the manufacturing phase (construction of the building + manufacturing of the IT equipment) represents on average 15% of the energy and GHG footprint of a data center in a country with "medium" carbon electricity (approx. 150-200gCO2/kWh).. To get to this figure, it is assumed that the building is new and will last 20 years and that the IT equipment is replaced every 4 to 5 years. Based on GAFAM's Scopes 3, a recent publication by researchers from Facebook, Harvard and Arizona University estimated that the carbon impact of data centers related to IT equipment, construction and infrastructure was higher than imagined. There is therefore a growing interest in better understanding these "omissions".

      This is a good point. Refresh rates can be closer to a 1-2 years in some hyperscalers. Good for use phase carbon, bad for embodied carbon

    1. The Commission found that the arrangement, as currently written, could result in annual revenue shortfalls ranging in the millions of dollars, which other customers would have to cover due to the credits that could completely zero-out Facebook’s bill.“The Commission noted this is not logical— that a customer could reduce its bill by using more resources,” it said.

      As I understand this, structuring this deal to give a a low cost for a loooong term agreement would mean bills would have to be raised on other rate payers to make sure the company with the monopoly is able to make the pre-agreed rate of return it as allowed to make each year.

    1. Multiply that by the 80k Server rooms and we get a staggering £4,600,000,000 per annum, (4.6Billion) or 38.54TWh or 11.37 percent of the electricity generated in the UK, a long way from the 1 percent cited earlier [although that was one percent of energy, not electricity - Editor].The CCA info (2017) revealed that the total electricty consumed by sites taking part in the Agreement was 2.573TWh which was 0.79 percent of the country's total electricity generation.So, my figures and the CCA (2017) figures total 41.11TWh representing just over 12 percent of total generation.

      In most cases this is likely a steady load across the whole year.

      41.11TWh seems incredibly high, compared to IEA figures of 200 TWh for the year, but assuming this is correct,

      We'd need to divide this by 365 for every day in the year, and then 24 for every hour to get an idea of the likely continous power draw, every hour as the infra doesn't really get turned off.

    2. After techUk’s Emma Fryer released the results of the second period of the UK data center sectors climate change agreement (CCA) 2nd Period findings in 2017, I conducted some desk-based research which looked at the issue from a UK PLC perspective and included all those enterprise data centers, server cupboards and machine rooms that are largely hidden.

      John mentioned to me the the CCA notes from 2017 might be a little out. It's worth sanity checking that.

    3. “In the UK 76.5 percent of the electricity purchased by our commercial data center operators is 100 percent certified renewable”

      This is an annualised figure, so it doesn't match the actual time of use of datacentres.

      For that we'd need to have a rough idea of how well generation matches the load profile in the UK

    1. In building this system we simultaneously solved three high-level challenges: supporting exabyte-scale, isolating performance between tenants, and enabling tenant-specific optimizations. Exabyte-scale clusters are important for operational simplicity and resource sharing. Tectonic disaggregates the file system metadata into independently scalable layers, and hash-partitions each metadata layer into a scalable shared key-value store. Combined with a linearly scalable storage node layer, this disaggregated metadata allows the system to meet the storage needs of an entire data center.

      So, it seems to add a layer of indirection, so instead of everyone needing to read off the same bits of a disk, the data is stored in places indexed by the KV store, which allows reads and writes to be spread across a linearly scaling storage layer.

      Worth reading the paper to check if this guess is close to reality

    1. The combination of Raspberry Pi and LimeSDR Mini brings with it another major advantage: cost. “The network we built in 2014 was using a software defined radio and a compute unit, but I think there, even for the cheap ones, we were looking at $1,500 for each base station. So, in four years we’ve come down probably eightfold in cost, and complexity and power and all the other stuff that goes with that, because stuff’s got physically smaller as well as cheaper.”

      Each base station for about 200 USD?

    1. Earlier this month, cleantech startup Clearloop broke ground on a 1‑megawatt solar project outside Jackson, Tennessee that stakes out a bold new definition of solar’s carbon-reduction value. It’s the first utility-scale solar project in the country to be partially financed by selling the carbon emissions it will displace over its lifetime. These transactions will not take the customary form of renewable energy credits that average out that value over time, but rather of carbon offsets that are directly related to the power grid the project is connected to.  In more specific terms, about $400,000, or roughly one-third of the project’s cost, was raised via the sale of offsets for nearly 60 million pounds of carbon emissions.

      Wow, this is so much more 'additional' than the often tokenistic measures I see with RECs

    1. The aim of the financial declaration clauses is to provide social pressure to make sure donations happen. This clause doesn't require anybody to make a donation to the DSF - there's no mandatory license fee for any use of the Django mark. However, if you want to use the Django name or logo, you do have to publicly declare that you're not giving anything back to the project. The hope is that this will provide enough social pressure to encourage some level of contribution back to the DSF.

      Social pressure tied to the trademark - useful example to refer to

    2. ... I'm not happy with the way an event/group handled my code of conduct complaint? The first line for reporting any code of conduct violation should always be the event or group organizers themselves. However, if you've done this, and you're not happy with the response you've received, contact the DSF by email: foundation@djangoproject.com and the DSF will investigate and respond. In the extreme case, this response may be to revoke the group/events license to use the Django name

      A potential escalation path for events and conferences when the denial and delay response talks come out

    3. You must also adopt a code of conduct (the Ada initiative draft is a good starting point, but you can choose another code if you wish), and agree to run your event in the spirit of the Django Community code of conduct.

      This is good example of trademark law being used to enforce norms around codes of conducts

    1. Originally, Google was building flying cell towers to beam down the Internet from the sky (over RF), but for balloon-to-balloon backhaul, the company was planning communications via laser beam. Space X just started doing something similar by equipping its Starlink satellites with space lasers for optical intra-satellite communication. One benefit of Sky- and space-based laser communication is that not much can interfere with a point-to-point optical beam. Ground-based lasers have more interference to consider, since they have to deal with nearly everything: rain, fog, birds, and once, according to Alphabet's blog post, "a curious monkey."

      a 'curious monkey' caused an internet outage by blocking the beam? outage

    1. For example, a 1:1 HD 1080p video meeting of 1 hour between two people would require 3.24GB of bandwidth, consuming 0.0486 kWh of electricity. The 2019 UK electricity emissions factor is 0.25358 kgCO2 per kWh, so the CO2 emissions for this call are 0.012 kgCO2. If this happened in the US between two people in New York, the emissions factor is similar to the UK at 0.28839 kgCO2 per kWh but if it was between two people in Chicago, that would be 0.56191 kgCO2 per kWh. Location matters.

      These figures are for 2019.

      The infra has got more efficient, in the two years since 2019, and the grid has also got greener, so the number is likely lower as well now in 2021.

    1. My estimate of 36gCO2 per hour is more than 2,100-times lower than Marks et al. (2020) who estimated that 35 hours of HD video emits 2.68tCO2, or 77kgCO2 per hour.

      This is a figure for netflix, which is likely lower than a zoom call.

      With a video on netflix, the infrastructure is designed to stream a file that's already been encoded.

      This is different to something zoom, where the infrastructure is on the fly encoding the live video streams coming from the camera, and if need be re-encoding them to suit the device

    2. a result, the central IEA estimate for one hour of streaming video in 2019 is now 36gCO2, down from 82gCO2 in the original analysis published in February 2020.

      By comparison an espresso coffee is around 280g CO2e. So if even if we use the high figure from the shift project, it's still three hours of video for around the carbon footprint of a cup of coffee.

    1. t’s not actually going to be a standard, per se, because you can’t pass regulatory standards through reconciliation. Instead, it’s going to be a system of fines and payments that will incentivize utilities to increase their proportion of renewable energy to meet the targets. It’s called a clean electricity payment program (CEPP). A CEPP actually has some advantages over the traditional CES’s and renewable portfolio standard (RPSs) commonly seen in states. For one thing, it’s more progressive: the money to drive the transition comes from federal coffers (via taxes on corporations and the wealthy) rather than from electricity rates, which are regressive.

      If you are paying for transition from taxation like this, because it's largely coming from richer members of society it's more progressive than tacking the charge onto every kilowatt used by consumers, which disproportionately affects lower income groups

    1. With a drink containing approximately 18 g of green coffee (Starbucks Coffee Company, 2019), each kg of green coffee makes approximately 56 espresso beverages. Thus, the carbon footprint found in the LCA is on average 0.28 and 0.06 kg CO2e per espresso beverage for conventional and sustainable coffee, respectively (9.2 and 2.1 g CO2e ml–1). In an LCA of milk production, Hassard et al. (2014) estimated a carbon footprint of 2.26 g CO2e ml–1. Using these values, the carbon footprint of standard coffee beverages was estimated: with the conventional production of coffee beans, the carbon footprints for one serving of caffe latte, flat white, and cappuccino were estimated to be 0.55, 0.34, and 0.41 kg CO2e, respectively. When produced sustainably, these values were reduced to 0.33, 0.13, and 0.20 kg CO2e

      These are the figures cited in Phys, and what you might compare to the streaming to get an idea of where losing an 3 hours of netflix is more important to you than skipping that next coffee

    1. Renewable energy surcharge (21%) Finances the feed-in tariffs for renewable power and the market premium paid to larger producers - 6.41 ct/kWh.

      About 20% of every kilowatt hour in germany goes towards the renewables surcharge. So the greater percentage of your earnings that you spend on electricity, the more you are contributing to renewables compared to someone who earns more and pays a lower amount.

    1. In the 2014 Radio Equipment Directive, EU lawmakers called for a common charger to be developed and gave the Commission powers to pursue this via a delegated act. The Commission's approach of “encouraging” industry to develop common chargers fell short of the co-legislators’ objectives. However, some progress has been made, said the Commission in the plenary debate on 13 January 2020: in 2009, there were more than 30 charging solutions, while today there are three charger types. In its resolution on the European Green Deal, Parliament called for an ambitious new circular economy action plan aiming to reduce the total environmental and resource footprint of EU production and consumption, with resource efficiency, zero pollution and waste prevention as key priorities.

      This is why I say expecting end users to just shop greener is missing a key part of the picture. The ability to compel an industry to standardise on a smaller number of chargers has saved an immense amount of waste, as it decouples the thing you want (shiny phone) from the thing you need so it can be used (charger).

    1. This article derives criteria to identify accurate estimates over time and provides a new estimate of 0.06 kWh/GB for 2015. By retroactively applying our criteria to existing studies, we were able to determine that the electricity intensity of data transmission (core and fixed-line access networks) has decreased by half approximately every 2 years since 2000 (for developed countries), a rate of change comparable to that found in the efficiency of computing more generally.

      this is a figure from 2017, but the halving has been going for 20 years. There are signs of it slowing down, but not by much.

    1. As the graph above shows, renewables will need to do the heavy lifting, growing even faster than in recent years. By 2050, says the IEA, around 90 per cent of global electricity supply will need to be low carbon, about 70 per cent from solar and wind power, with the rest mostly from nuclear.

      this is the edited version of the data in the IEA 1.5 C net zero report in May

    1. The average cup of coffee contains about 18g of green coffee, so 1 kg of it can make 56 espressos. Just one espresso has an average carbon footprint of about 0.28 kg, but it could be as little as 0.06 kg if grown sustainably.

      This is the figure I use when comparing the quoted figures for video streaming

    1. Climate protection is a human right and must be included in the constitution

      I have never seen this before - having it included in the constitution itself?

    1. But I'm wondering if VC-backed firms should be excluded from projects that require long-term maintenance because their growth requirements (fiduciary duties to investors, aka "we need a hockey stick") means they can't commit to 10-20 year contracts?

      Actual serious point. We've had 20-odd years of seeing the incentives at work, and they're not always good.

    1. 2020 is the year in which the current Dutch subsidy scheme for renewable energy, the Renewable Energy Production Incentive Scheme (de stimuleringsregeling duurzame energieproductie (SDE+)), will change. From 2020 onwards, the SDE + will be broadened to achieve the target of a 49 percent reduction in CO2 emissions in the Netherlands by 2030 (or at least to keep this goal within reach). The broadened SDE+ focuses on the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions (CO2 and other greenhouse gases). This will change the focus from energy production to energy transition. The broadened subsidy scheme is therefore called the Renewable Energy Transition Incentive Scheme (SDE++).

      So, this is the expanded version that is focussed on a more holistic, systemic approach

  10. Jun 2021
    1. Air pollution caused by the burning of fossil fuels such as coal and oil was responsible for 8.7m deaths globally in 2018, a staggering one in five of all people who died that year, new research has found.

      This is not climate change, heat related deaths - this is particulate matter (PM2.5) from burning the fuels themselves

  11. Feb 2021
    1. ClimateTech Jobs Fair: CAT members Terra.do, in addition to being one of the first orgs to donate to CAT, are organising a virtual jobs fair on March 5th. Register to have live 1:1 conversations with hiring managers on for jobs in software, data science, product management, hardware and more at top climatetech companies.

      Terra do's plug for their job fair.

    1. While itis criticalto enhancethe sustainability of digitalisation, the ICT sector’s estimated potential in the reduction of GHGs is ten times higher than its own footprint



  12. Jan 2021
    1. Currently, there is a significant lack of transparency of environmental cost, which should be urgently resolved given the vast scale of resource usage. Therefore, NGIatlantic.eu invites EU – US applicants that can provide and experiment with transparency mechanisms on the environmental cost of the Internet. Identification and tagging of most resource consuming elements are also very important and urgent. On both sides of the Atlantic, there has already been some early research and innovation projects and initiatives focussing on alternatives to improving energy efficiency to ensure the greening and sustainability of the Internet and of the economy relying on it. This topic welcomes the results from these EU activities to team up with US teams (or vice versa, with US teams twinning with EU teams) to carry out experiments in this vitally important NGI topic.

      Interesting. I couldn't see many in the link though.

    1. That will allow the utility to match in real-time specific units of renewable energy generation with Microsoft’s usage – and dispatch energy from storage if there’s a shortfall – to ensure Microsoft is continually supplied with renewable energy, Janous said.

      They ARE pairing it with batteries

    1. Typically, a data center is seen as an inflexible load, or a “single block” of power, she said. In other words, if the facility’s total load is 10MW, the conventional approach is to ensure there’s 10MW of backup power. Google has learned to not treat total load as an inflexible block and match backup capacity more tightly with the capacity required by applications that run in the facility and the duration for which it’s required.

      This is a good summary of carbon-aware compute.

    2. Also this year, Microsoft announced a successful test for powering a data center rack with a hydrogen-fueled automotive fuel cell, looking at the technology as one of the potential replacements for diesel generators.

      Bosch sell these now, or are making them.


      There's also a collosal amount of EU money in creating a hydrogen economy, so it feels like there conditions are good for switching.

    3. Google estimates that the total generation capacity of all diesel-fueled data center backup generators deployed worldwide is more than 20 gigawatts, which could spell vast opportunities for renewable energy storage.

      20 gigawatts needed to replace all fossil generators worldwide.

      Not sure how long diesel generators last - 12 hrs? 24hrs?

    4. Maud Texier, Google’s carbon free energy lead

      Maud is the lead person on making Making DC's an active part of a future, responsive, sustainable grid

    1. But proponents of immersion cooling technologies emphasize their efficiency advantages. These solutions don’t require any fans. Server fans are usually removed altogether. “You can probably get at least a 15-percent energy reduction in a lot of environments by going to liquid cooling,” Brown said.

      I didn't know that liquid cooling was more energy efficient than air cooling. I also didn't really think about it much either, but it make sense. Liquid is a better conductor of heat than air in cooking, so…

    2. As Uptime’s Lawrence pointed out, generators are “a problem.” They are expensive to deploy and maintain, they pollute the atmosphere, and make a lot of noise. So far, however, they’ve been an indispensable part of any data center that’s meant to keep running around the clock.

      Wow, I didn't know the direction of travel away from diesel was so pronounced in DCs. Makes sense tho.

    1. Perhaps the most critical feature of a decentralized UPS architecture is it allows data centers to meet increased demand by deploying equipment-specific resources that can scale according to needs. New cabinets can expand capacity as necessary, while additional rectifiers and battery modules can increase power for servers added to open racks. By relying on DC power components that connect directly to the AC utility feed, a decentralized power architecture allows facilities to operationalize stranded white space and maximize infrastructure without placing any additional strain on their existing UPS system.

      Oh wow, so they decentralise INSIDE the datacentre. Would this mean it's would be easier to move loads (as in power usage) around in the DC, and power down entire sections more easily?

  13. Nov 2020
    1. 1,966,423

      Total renewable energy used.

      Between ~28% is from renewable sources

    2. 6,904,262 MWh

      Total energy use



    1. As a leader in the European data centre industry, we strive to set an example of environmental responsibility. In addition to innovations in engineering and diligent operations for maximising energy efficiency, Interxion supports and consumes energy from sustainable and low carbon sources to the greatest practical extent in our markets of operation. A large proportion of our power comes from sustainable sources, including water, solar and wind.

      A large proportion is a bit vague, and not the same as 100%.

      If they're part of the same group, as Digital Realty, they should have these numbers as DR's report includes total powered used, vs total power from renewable sources, and there are clear ways to confirm this if true.

    1. We’re now 100% powered by renewable and sustainable energy which is great in further minimizing our impact on the planet. Plausible Analytics script weights less than 1 KB which is more than 45 times smaller than the recommended Google Analytics Global Site Tag implementation.

      After speaking to the folks at Plausible they pointed me to this page on the digital ocean community forums:


      And this one here:


      The TLDR version is that the servers they are using are run by Digital Ocean, who lease from Interxion, who source the power for the datacentre from renewables.

      Interxion themselves are owned by Digital Realty, who do release figures, but not at a granularity to confirm.

      Once there is info from Interxion, it's possible to confirm this.

    1. ours of session time in each region is multiplied by estimated powerconsumption of devices and device breakdown (% laptop, % tablet,etc.) used to access Mozilla products. This calculation produces totalannual kWh by region. Regional electricity emissions factors areapplied to calculate total regional emissions and summed to calculatetotal emissions by product

      Yup. the more I look at this the more it doesn't seem to account for transfer.

      I can see why you might not account for this, and leave it outside the system boundary, but I can't see the how the logic for including hardware, but not including network usage, then it's likely to be material.

    2. Technology energy consumption used to access Mozilla products,broken down by type and power consumption: desktop computer,laptop computer, tablet, mobile, modem/router.

      Looking at this, it seems not to account for emissions from network transfer, which would be a key use for a browser - just end use.

    3. Renewable energy reportedat 4 sites. Nodocumentation provided.

      Is this normal?

    4. Server allocation per $ spend: 0.001 server / $ spend

      So, put another way for every ~10k of spend, you assume you're using one whole physical server's worth of compute.

    5. Sum of space-specific refrigerant leak in kg by refrigerant type,divided by 1,000, multiplied by refrigerant type-specific globalwarming potential (GWP) to calculate organization total GHGemissions in mtCO​2​e.

      This gives an idea of why fixing refrigeration ranked such a high intervention on drawdown. Many of these refrigerant gases are utter carbon bastards, and really bad news. one kilo released has a similar impact as 1.3 tonnes of 'regular' CO2!

    6. Mozilla uses “business services and operations”to refer to the organization’s calculated Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions with the exception of Scope3 Use of Products.

      14k tonnes would be the footprint of Mozilla if they didn't account for end user products.

    7. Use of Products = 98% ofScope 3 total

      Wow, this a huge percentage. It's pretty rare of orgs to report end user emissions as well, but it highlights the important of setting sensible defaults.

    8. Scope 2 emissions were calculated under two accounting methodologies: location-based andmarket-based.

      Calculating with both is good. this stops you being able to hide emissions by only showing the net emissions which is what you get if you use market based emissions only.

      For more, see this commentary on Amazon's reporting: https://greeningdigital.substack.com/p/greening-digital-2-omgclimate-and

    9. Mozilla’s 2019 GHG inventory is comprised of emissions from scope 1, scope 2 and relevantscope 3 categories.

      It's surprising how many companies don't do all three scopes. It's good to see the effort gone in.

    10. 2019 GHG Inventory Report

      Hi there.

      I use Mozilla Firefox, and broadly speaking, I'm a fan of the orgnisation. Here are my notes as I read though te report/


  14. Oct 2020
    1. We have: defined procurement principles and standards. These are (in summary): 100% renewable energy and/or carbon neutral suppliers 0% to landfill and an annual increase in reuse and material recycling increased transparency across HMG, suppliers and the supply chain 100% traceability of ICT at end of life a yearly increase in procured ICT and services that is remanufactured/refurbished

      Pretty explicit

    1. I'm really curious whether or how creating more effective car battery recycling technologies could support or underwrite consumer electronics recycling. For years, the line on e-waste has been that the economic model for electronics recycling just doesn't work. As devices get smaller, extraction gets more time-consuming and with increased component miniaturization, recycling companies are getting less and less value from what metal they can recover (although notably, Redwood Materials is refining their battery recycling process through recycling consumer electronics). Recycling car batteries at scale fills a massive need and companies will definitely pay for those materials. If Redwood can get it right, they could potentially make a less-profitable recycling niche more viable with the resources afforded by its primary more profitable niche.

      Basically, ways to reclaim existing materials in the technosphere, than need to mine stuff

  15. Sep 2020
    1. In addition, the recent need to accelerate deep-learning and artificial intelligence applications has led to the emergence of specialized accelerator hardware, including graphics processing units (GPUs), tensor processing units (TPUs) and field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs). Owing to its in-memory data model, NumPy is currently unable to directly utilize such storage and specialized hardware. However, both distributed data and also the parallel execution of GPUs, TPUs and FPGAs map well to the paradigm of array programming: therefore leading to a gap between available modern hardware architectures and the tools necessary to leverage their computational power.

      Ah, so it whie it supports SIMD, it doesn't support this stuff yet.

    2. NumPy operates on in-memory arrays using the central processing unit (CPU). To utilize modern, specialized storage and hardware, there has been a recent proliferation of Python array packages

      So these can drop down to take advantage of SIMD and all that?

  16. Aug 2020
    1. his dream of it being as easy to “insert facts, data, and models in political discussion as it is to insert emoji” 😉 speaks to a sort of consumerist, on-demand thirst for snippets, rather than a deep understanding of complexity. It’s app-informed, drag-and-drop data for instant government.
  17. Jun 2020
    1. James Hetherington, Directorate of Digital Research Infrastructure, UK Research and Innovation

      Holy shit. AMEE James? Small world.


    1. The set-up of a cloud services marketplace for EU users from the private and public sector will be facilitated by the Commission by Q4 2022. The marketplace will put potential users (in particular the public sector and SMEs) in the position to select cloud processing, software and platform service offerings that comply with a number of requirements in areas like data protection, security, data portability, energy efficiency and market practice.

      Best source of compute, but across the entire EU?

  18. May 2020
    1. In France, as in other Western countries, for various reasons too long to mention in this study, the collection level of waste electrical and electronic equipment is around 45%.

      This is higher than I thought - almost half of all electronics are collected in France?

    2. Had they been implemented as of 2010, these 4 measures would have reduced the global digital footprint over the period observed (2010 to 2025) by between 27% and 52%

      How would you back this claim up, or disprove it? It feels like catnip for journalists, but I don't see how you could interrogate it.

    3. Reducing the number of flat screens by replacing them with other display devices such as augmented / virtual reality glasses, LED video projectors, etc.

      Presumably this would be down to the energy intensive nature of making a flatscreen?

    4. Their contribution to the impact of the digital world thus goes f rom less than 1% (all environmental indicators combined) in 2010 to between 18% and 23% in 2025. It is huge!

      These numbers seem comically high

    5. In 2025, user equipment will concentrate from 56% to 69% of the impact. For example, 62% of digital GHG emissions will be user-related, 35% of which comes from equipment manufacturing.

      What kind energy mix does this assume in 2025?

    6. The hierarchy of impact sources is as follows, in descending order of importance:1. Manufacturing of user equipment;2. Power consumption of user equipment;

      So these guys say it's the end use that's the big problem, not the infrastructure or network usage per se.

    7. In 2019, the mass of this digital world amounts to 223 million tonnes, the equivalent of 179 million cars of 1.3 tonnes (5 times the number of cars in France).

      So this might be a bit like the idea of biomass, but for technology?

    1. We've likely cleared half the biomass of plants on earth, and after that, they make up more than 80% of all the biomass of everything alive today.

      The livestock we farm is likely around 10 times the biomass of all wild mammals and birds

    1. This document gives a good background on where you might choose to use LCA, and where it's not such a useful tool.

      It's from 2012, but what it's saying is mostly in line with my understanding of the subject.

      Things have moved on since it was written and the open source projects seem not to be all that active now.

    2. © Intellect July 2012

      This report is 8 years old.

    3. Source: IBM/Carnegie Mellon University Carbon Footprint Research Study

      What year is this from?

    4. Analysis of a web-search of published LCA study results for ICT devices showing percentage use-stage carbon. Source: Darrel Stickler, Cisco

      This diagram is v handy - at a glance, it gives an idea where the main levers for reducing might be depending on the kind of product

    5. This framework tends to follow a similar pattern which includes most or all of the following steps: set goals and define scope, inventory analysis, impact assessment, interpretation, reporting and critical review.

      This is a really helpful diagram for explaining what the alphabet soup of standards means, and how you might apply them.

    6. Even the OECD definition of ICT includes a whole range of consumer electronic (CE) products that many would not expect to see classed as ICT.

      Where is the official definition in the OECD?

    7. And with carbon, as with calories, it is the pies –or rather their carbon equivalents -that are important. LCA is a poor tool for differentiating between strawberries and raspberries, but it is a wonderful tool for identifying where the pies are, and who is eating them

      This is totally worth using in future


    1. 1,211,22

      This is the final figure for scope 1, 2, and 3, after accounting for market based figures for CO2 from energy.

      They've split out a huge chunk of emissions in scope 3 as *other, but it's not immediately obvious to me what this includes, and they've chosen not to account for it when it comes to purchasing the offsets anyway.

    2. 15,027,224

      So this figure is actually pretty close to Microsoft now. The figures I was looking at were for just scope 1 and 2, not scope 3.

    1. The action was the digital equivalent of queueing up at McDonalds and ordering the non-existent vegan, zero-waste Happy Meal again and again. Rebels targeted a different polluter each day, including fossil fuel companies Shell and BP, shipping company Maersk, and the Danish Finance Ministry for its recent bailout of Scandinavian Airlines.

      This sounds a lot like DDOSing websites to me.

    1. What exactly has changed?

      Y'kow, they could have mentioned this earlier in this long post full of verbiage.

    1. Technological improvements also play a role in driving down battery costs. Frith points out that the term lithium-ion battery is actually an umbrella term for a number of different battery chemistries.

      Did not know this.