This may be the greatest sentence ever written in the English language: “As IT industry analysts label 2010 the ‘Year of the Cloud,’ a new report by Greenpeace shows how the launch of quintessential cloud computing devices like the Apple iPad raises fresh questions about how the Internet is powered and whether the IT sector will continue to fuel climate change by increasing demand for dirty coal power.” Dirty Coal Power: on tour this summer (with special guest Limp Bizkit)! In other words, does the iPad hate freedom? Obviously.
Greenpeace actually makes a couple of good points. Devices like the iPad (and Google Chrome OS) pretty much rely upon cloud computing in order for them to work.
Cloud computing requires pretty big data centers in order for them to work. So big, in fact, that Greenpeace estimates that by 2020, these data centers will demand more electricity than is currently demanded by France, Brazil, Canada, and Germany combined. That’s around 1,963 billion kilowatt hours just for you to run a couple of applications.
The implication, of course, is that devices and services that rely on cloud computing, including the iPad, will drive up this planet’s energy consumption, and thereby everyone of your carbon footprints.
So, in a manner of speaking, the iPad isn’t very green. That may not matter to y’all, but it certainly matters to folks like Greenpeace, and people who live in Park Slope, Brooklyn.
Just a few more days till iPad Day, which I’m going to guess won’t be nearly as big as the original iPhone Day.