CHASM Comment: Vast amounts of (mostly useless?) data from “smart” meters = more data storage = more toxic pollution
Data Barns in a Farm Town, Gobbling Power and Flexing Muscle
Internet-based industries have honed a reputation for sleek, clean convenience based on the magic they deliver to screens. At the heart of every Internet enterprise are data centers, which have become more sprawling and ubiquitous as the amount of stored information explodes, sprouting in community after community.
But the Microsoft experience in Quincy shows that when these Internet factories come to town, they can feel a bit more like old-time manufacturing than modern magic.
In Santa Clara, Calif., a hub of technology facilities, diesel emissions from generators at a Microsoft data center landed the company on a list of polluters for potentially threatening the health of workers at nearby businesses. Microsoft, which was notified by state regulators last year, says it has reduced its emissions.
The remarkable scale of the Quincy data centers, and their power demands, have made this town something of a test tube for studying the planet’s exploding need to house and process digital information.
NOTE: SHORTER VERSION OF THIS ARTICLE HERE:
Internet data centers bring huge appetites for energy