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Google emissions jump nearly 50% over five years as AI use surges

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By illuminem briefings

· 1 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on the Financial Times or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: Google's greenhouse gas emissions have surged by 48% over the past five years due to the expansion of data centers needed for AI systems, casting doubt on its commitment to reach "net zero" by 2030

🔭 The context: In 2023, Google's emissions amounted to 14.3 million tonnes of carbon equivalent, a 13% rise from the previous year
• The company highlighted the challenges of reducing emissions while investing in AI infrastructure and applications

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: The rapid growth in emissions underscores the environmental impact of AI, which poses significant challenges for Big Tech companies aiming to achieve sustainability goals

⏭️ What's next: Google remains committed to its 2030 target and is working on reducing emissions by signing clean energy deals
• However, the future environmental impact of AI remains complex and difficult to predict

💬 One quote: "We do still expect our emissions to continue to rise before dropping towards our goal," said Kate Brandt, Google's Chief Sustainability Officer

📈 One stat: Google's data center electricity consumption increased by 17% in 2023, representing approximately 7-10% of global data center electricity consumption

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