What's the Latest Development?

A report recently published in the American Chemical Society's journal Environmental Science & Technology describes the development of two new models for measuring the information communication and technology industry's impact on the environment. Researchers at the Australia-based Centre for Energy-Efficient Telecommunications (CEET) and Bell Labs say that these models, when tested on a network serving most California schools, delivered better and more accurate energy consumption and greenhouse gas emission estimates than current top-down models. The new versions include allowances for equipment variations and other industry factors.

What's the Big Idea?

Together, the structures that support telecommunications -- including Internet, voice, video, and cloud services -- produce more than 830 million tons of carbon dioxide yearly. At 2 percent of total global carbon dioxide emissions, it may not seem like a large amount, but it puts the industry on par with aviation, and it's expected to double in a mere 7 years. CEET, a public-private partnership, is the first research center dedicated to finding ways to improve energy efficiency and reduce negative environmental impact in this sector.

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