Revealed: the environmental impact of Google searches

Revealed: the environmental impact of Google searchesPhysicist Alex Wissner-Gross says that performing two Google searches uses up as much energy as boiling the kettle for a cup of tea Jonathan Leake and Richard Woods div#related-article-links p a, div#related-article-links p a:visited { color:#06c; }

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Performing two Google searches from a desktop computer can generate about the same amount of carbon dioxide as boiling a kettle for a cup of tea, according to new research.

While millions of people tap into Google without considering the environment, a typical search generates about 7g of CO2 Boiling a kettle generates about 15g. “Google operates huge data centres around the world that consume a great deal of power,” said Alex Wissner-Gross, a Harvard University physicist whose research on the environmental impact of computing is due out soon. “A Google search has a definite environmental impact.”

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