What Sized Shoe Is That?12 January 2009
Carbon cost of Googling revealedby Greg Morsbach of the BBC
A recent study estimated the global IT sector generated as much greenhouse gas as the world's airlines put together.
Perhaps we should demand an apology on this score from Al Gore. After all, he told us that he
took the initiative in creating the Internet.
[Up-Date (13 Jan): I was informed by Gaal, in a comment to this entry, that the Times had somehow fabricated this story. (The BBC presenting the story as if it were their own research, but the chances that they would have independently fabricated the same details are slim indeed. So the Times has been caught-out in one way, and the BBC in another.) Meanwhile, the BBC story has been significantly edited, so that the sentence quoted above no longer appears, and we are instead told
A recent study by American research firm Gartner suggested that IT now causes two percent of global emissions.]
Note that Snopes.com demonstrates that Al Gore did not claim to have invented the Internet. But what Gore did claim (and they even quote this) was
because the Internet is not a homogenous entityand didn't
spring into being at once. Well, not much in this world is homogenous and static, but it is simply disingenuous to claim to have taken the initiative in creäting something that already existed because one pushed to fund its further development.