How global warming threatens the internet with giant blackouts

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[EN VIDÉO] The Incredible Journey of Global Internet Traffic
When we go online, our data goes a very long way. Thus, an email travels an average of 15,000 km to reach its destination!

Just last week, heat wave record that landed on England succeeded in moving the cloud services of The Google And the inspiration. With temperatures exceeding 40 degrees Celsius and failures in some cooling systems, the two tech giants found themselves struggling to keep their servers at the right temperature, and had to take many of their machines out of service to reduce damage and the risk of prolonged downtime.

Web servers, let’s remember, should make these things simple Computers under SteroidsIts function is to host your favorite websites and give you access to them. service requireenergy And sends a lot of the heatjust like your Mac when you keep streaming Twitch While retouching your latest photos in Photoshop.

A technical but also an environmental challenge

issue server cooling It’s a real technical challenge but also an environmental one, and in the face of rising temperatures, the challenge is getting even more difficult. Besides Google, Oracle, and many more Data Center Londoners, who also host armies of servers, found themselves frantic last week. Because there was no better solution, they had to resort to the most low tech Ways to solve their problem: Send their employees to rooftops Garden hoses to try to cool buildings!

If the situation seems funny or unusual at the time, it is better not to deceive ourselves. For more than forty years, researchers have measured an extraordinary increase in Temperatures in Western Europewith temperatures rising 3 to 4 times faster than in other regions of the world located in the same place latitudes. The trend is not about to reverse. So next summer is likely to be synonymous with heat waves but also with increasingly frequent internet outages. And of course heat is just one of the consequences of climate change that could threaten the web to collapse.

Dissolved or flooded data centers

Take for example ocean rise. Already in 2018, a study by the University of Wisconsin-Madison indicates that in 15 years, that is, by 2032, more than 6000 km of cable Optical fiber Currently buried underwater in the United States alone. And if you’re thinking that whether they’re underground or underwater doesn’t make much difference, know that after ten days of passing Cyclone Katrina, two-thirds of router networks in Mississippi are still down.

In France, many cities like Marseille or Le Havre will have to think about their future Data Center before they find their feet in the water. On the other hand, the fires that destroy an increasing part of what remains of our forests every year also threaten human infrastructure, along with hurricanes, Tornadoesor even storms Snow or periods of extreme cold that breed all over the world.

Escalation containment to prevent crashes

In the face of this weather report More than ever, skeleton physical From the Internet so you must arm yourself with it steadfastness, with data centers that are better adapted to weather conditions, but also using redundancy to be able to deal with the inevitably coming crashes. More and more companies are maximizing their devices, connections, power sources or simply their data to ensure service continuity and reduce data loss. A solution that has its advantages but also inevitably means increased electricity consumption for server farms, which already have a monopoly over 1% of their consumption worldwide.

As climate change continues to gain momentum,Internet carbon footprint It also continues to spread like a pool of oil on the surface of the ocean. A vicious cycle that we can only escape by taking action to shrink us emissionsand completely rethinking the network of tomorrow.

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