Author | Arantxa HerranzInternet-connected devices. High-resolution video streaming. Emails. Surveillance cameras. Smart TVs. The list of the different types of smart and connected products and devices that enable us to live better lives continues to grow. But the amount of electricity these devices require is also increasing.According to a report by the Swedish researcher Anders Andrae, power demand from internet-connected devices is increasing 20% each year. In 2015, it accounted for approximately 3-5% of the world’s electricity consumption. In his report, Andrae discovered that the ICT industry could use 20% of the entire world’s electricity and emit around 5.5% of the world’s carbon emissions by 2025. In other words, more than any country (except the United States, China and India).However, together with this high consumption, another problem is the energy they waste. According to a report by the International Energy Agency in 2014, the 14 billion connected electronic devices that existed then, wasted around USD 80 billion each year because of their inefficient technology. For 2020, the problem will considerably worsen, with an estimated USD 120 billion wasted.With an ever-increasing number of connected devices and sensors, energy demand continues to rise. An increase that will reach 28% between 2015 and 2040, according to the United States Energy Information Administration’s calculations. Most of this growth (60%) is expected to come from countries that are not in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), and especially in countries where demand is driven by strong economic growth, particularly in Asia.However, there are also encouraging figures. For example, the global energy demand per capita will peak in 2030. From then on, and thanks to new energy efficiency technologies and stricter government policies, this demand will gradually drop, according to the World Energy Council.
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