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News item: Could Computers Be Used to Heat Our Homes and Offices?

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3 comments, last: Jun-27-2009   Add a comment   Contributor:  Wavehunter (Jun-25-2009)    Play a Video
Optimism: 3 Categories: Global Warming, Peak Oil/Gas & Energy Demand

IBM Zurich research laboratory: trying to keep it coolIBM tries for new technology that uses the heat produced by computers to warm buildings.

By Duncan Graham-Rowe

The world's first large-scale test of new technology that uses the heat produced by computers to warm buildings is about to begin in Switzerland.

The hope is that the three-year trial of the system, called Aquasar, will lead to carbon emissions reductions of 85% through simultaneously cutting the energy used to cool the chips while also reducing heating bills.

Also see an external article:

Web Providers Must Limit Internet's Carbon Footprint, Say Experts

See original news item: The Guardian, Jun-24-2009  
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Comment by: Patrick (Jun-27-2009)   Web site
This seems like an awesome idea, especially in colder areas. Computer servers generate so much energy that it makes sense to harness that energy into something useful. This is truly encompassing the idea of reuse.
  
Comment by:  PT (David Alexander) (Jun-26-2009)   Web site

And those who have been following professional tennis for a while remember the phrase "Cash advance" (for whenever Pat Cash was doing well in a tournament in the 1980s). Seriously, going green should be easy up to a point -- but for the rest, we need government to kick in. I feel that government will do so when enough of the public is already attuned to green ideas and clamoring for real change. People do want change -- but just as it has always been, they don't know yet what that change REALLY entails.

Meanwhile, the Internet is growing rapidly, and the figure of an estimated 1.5% of US electric demand feeding the Internet, is a BIG number. With 10% annual growth, where will we end up in, say, 20 years?
  
Comment by:  Wavehunter (William Coffin) (Jun-26-2009)   Web site

'A cash advance to the Earth': I like that image. I believe there are lots of useful things that individuals, companies and governments can do to help and you list some of them. (There are plenty of places on the Internet where one can find more good ideas.)

My feeling, however, is that they won't go far enough. For example, we could all trade in our cars for ones that use less oil and emit less carbon. Good. But that would only delay the peak oil moment by a few months or years; it would only slow global warming by a fraction of a degree per year. What we all need to do is work less, produce less and consume less - in other words, lifestyle changes which, added together, make for a societal change that is nothing short of revolutionary.

  
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About contributor Member: Wavehunter (William Coffin) Wavehunter (William Coffin)
   Web site: http://www.stumbleupon.com/stumbler/Wavehunter/reviews/

Member: Wavehunter (William Coffin) I lived in Britain for many years, where I studied politics and international relations and worked in the charity sector. Now I live in Mexico and juggle my time between bringing up a young son, writing science fiction, teaching English and engaging with the global community on-line. I want to learn more about the enormous changes we all face so we might make a peaceful transition to what is bound to be a very different society.

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