$80 Billion Wasted Powering Online Devices in 2013

Posted by Michelle Howard
Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Simple measures can keep problem of inefficient ‘network standby’ from worsening in years ahead, IEA report says.
Today, the world’s 14 billion online electronic devices – such as set-top boxes, modems, printers and game consoles – waste around USD 80 billion each year because of inefficient technology. By 2020, the problem will considerably worsen, with an estimated USD 120 billion wasted. But a report by the International Energy Agency points to a different path, identifying simple measures that can be implemented now to improve energy efficiency in networked devices, resulting in massive savings of energy and money.

The report, More Data, Less Energy: Making Network Standby More Efficient in Billions of Connected Devices, shows that electricity demand of our increasingly digital economies is growing at an alarming rate. While data centre energy demand has received much attention, of greater cause for concern is the growing energy demand of billions of networked devices. In 2013, a relatively small portion of the world’s population relied on these devices to stay connected. But energy demand is increasing as a growing share of the world’s population becomes wired and as network connectivity spreads to devices and appliances that were previously not connected, such as washing machines, refrigerators, lights and thermostats.
“The proliferation of connected devices brings many benefits to the world, but right now the cost is far higher than it should be,” said IEA Executive Director Maria van der Hoeven. “Consumers are losing money in the form of wasted energy, which is leading to more costly power stations and more distribution infrastructure being built than we would otherwise need – not to mention all the extra greenhouse gases that are being emitted. But it need not be this way. If we adopt best available technologies we can minimise the cost of meeting demand as the use and benefits of connected devices grows.”
As the report explains, much of the problem boils down to inefficient “network standby” – that is, the maintaining of a network connection while in standby. In many devices, standby is a misnomer: it suggests that the device has gone to sleep and is almost off. In reality, most network-enabled devices draw as much power in this mode as when activated to perform their main tasks.
In 2013, the world’s networked devices consumed around 616 terawatt hours (TWh) of electricity, the majority of which was used in standby mode. Of that total, around 400 TWh – equivalent to the electricity consumed annually by the United Kingdom and Norway combined – was wasted because of inefficient technology.
“The problem is not that these devices are often in standby mode, but rather that they typically use much more power than they should to maintain a connection and communicate with the network,” said Ms. Van der Hoeven. “Just by using today’s best available technology, such devices could perform exactly the same tasks in standby while consuming around 65% less power.”
The report describes technologies and technical solutions as well as a range of policy options that are available to reduce energy waste. It projects that if better energy efficiency measures were applied to online devices in the coming years, 600 TWh of energy would be saved. That’s equivalent to shutting 200 standard 500MW coal-fired power plants, which would cut emissions by 600 million metric tons of CO2.
In the report, the IEA calls on policy makers, standards development organisations, software and hardware developers, designers, service providers and manufacturers to work together to reduce energy demand. To achieve this, the agency urges an international initiative to enhance standards, as the issue is global.


Maritime Today

The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

Maritime Reporter November 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds


Ballast Water Management in the Field Put to the Test

Turner Designs, along with scientists from around the world participated in a research cruise aboard the RV Meteor, a vessel owned by the Federal Republic of Germany

Vesper Marine Debuts New AIS Transponder

Marine safety products manufacturer Vesper Marine has released a new Class B Automatic Identification System (AIS), the XB-6000. The black box transponder includes

Ecoslops Produces First Marine Fuel Prodcuts

Ecoslops' refinery in the Port of Sinès, Portugal, has commenced industrial production and delivered the first volume of marine fuel products compliant with ISO8217,


Swan Energy to Invest $845 mln for FSRU Terminal

Swan Energy Limited will invest around Rs. 5,600 crore ($845 mln) towards setting up of Jafrabad LNG Port project in Gujarat with one jetty-moored Floating, Storage and Regasification Unit (FSRU).

Tidal Energy from Deep and Slow Waters

Deep Green, an underwater kite construction from the Swedish company Minesto, is set to be deployed in 2017 at the Holyhead Deep site off the coast of Anglesey, Wales.

Philippines Takes South China Sea Claim to Hague

Could bolster claims by other countries against China; China boycotting proceedings, rejects court's authority. The Philippines asked global judges on Tuesday


UASC Sees Big Drop on Asian-Europe Route

Kuwait-headquartered United Arab Shipping Company (UASC) said that marked drop in Asian imports to Europe, made worse by a strong dollar, has heaped pain on container

Nippon Foundation’s Sasakawa receives International Maritime Prize

Yohei Sasakawa, Chairman of the Nippon Foundation, has received the 2014 International Maritime Prize for his contribution to the work of the International Maritime

Announcing the Launch of OI North America 2017

Oceanology International (OI), the world’s largest exhibition and conference for the ocean science and marine technology community, announced the launch of the


EASTMED to Add VSAT on 20 Tankers and Bulkers

Greece-based Eastern Mediterranean Maritime Limited (EASTMED), a shipping operator servicing the energy, industrial and agricultural sectors, has chosen to install

VIKING, PVA Join Forces for New USCG Safety Compliancy

Coastal vessel operators trying to come to terms with upgraded US Coast Guard regulations for survival craft have been helped along the way by VIKING at the

P&O Maritime Rebranded Repasa

P&O Maritime has announced the rebranding of its joint venture company Repasa, the Spanish operator of offshore support vessels for the energy industry.   P&O

Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Maritime Standards Pipelines Pod Propulsion Port Authority Ship Electronics Ship Repair Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1131 sec (9 req/sec)