The Surprising Energy Used in Google Searches

HOME ENERGY AUDITS help tell us about our HOME ENERGY usage, but many people have no idea about the amount of energy that is being consumed by surfing the Internet. From the energy of our computers, to the the communications infrastructure linking everything together, to the service providers themselves; each component that assists in the transport or processing of information over the Internet uses energy. It takes a great deal of power to sustain these innumerable connections, but we rarely quantify exactly how much energy we’re using. To illustrate this massive energy consumption, our infographic depicts the energy used in a Google search.

Google Data:

Light Bulb Data:

100 watt bulb uses 100 watts or .1kw  in an hour
100 watt bulb uses .001666kw in a minute
100 watt bulb uses .0000277kw in a second
Google search uses .0003kw
100 watt bulb uses 1 kwh every ten hours
100 watt bulb uses .0016 kwh in a minute
One Google search could power a 100w light bulb for 11 seconds (.0003/.0000277)
One month’s Google searches could power a 100w light bulb for 4,534 years (3,900,000/.1 = 39,000,000 hours)

Bicycle Power Data:
Average cyclist can generate 75 watts/h this is .075kw  each hour
Average cyclist can generate .00125 kw in a minute
Average cyclist can generate .0000208333 kw in one second
One Google search uses .0003kww
One Google search uses the same amount of energy as a cyclist uses in 14seconds (.0003/.0000208)
One month’s Google searches use 3,900,000kwh
One Google search could power a bicycle for 5,936 years (3,900,000/.075= 52,000,000hrs)

Car CO2 Data:
Average car exhales 11,450lbs of CO2 each year or 5,193kg per year (based on 12,500miles)
Average car exhales 0.41544kg of CO2 per mile or 415g per mile.
There are 63,360 inches in one mile, therefore .006g of CO2 released for each inch the car moves
One Google search produces .02g or roughly 3 inches in a car
One month’s Google searches produce 260,000kg or 260,000,000g of CO2
One month’s Google searches equal roughly 626,506 miles worth of CO2 from driving

Breathing CO2:
1g of CO2 has a volume of 556ml.
400ml/min of CO2 are released per person per minute
Therefore 400ml has weight of 0.72g.
Therefore in 1 hour the net CO2 released is 0.72 X 60 = 43.2g
One day is 43.2 X 24=1036g or 1.036kg.
One year is 1.036 X 365= 378.332Kg or 0.378332 metric tonnes
One Google search produces as much CO2 as you breath out in 2 seconds
One month’s Google searches produce as much CO2 as you would breath out in 824 years.

Heart Power Data:
Average energy used by a human heart is roughly 2watts or .002kw in an hour
Average energy used by a human heart in a minute is .0000333kwh
Google search averages .0003kwh per search
It takes 6.6 searches to use the same amount of power as your heart uses in an hour(.002kwh/.0003kwh)
Monthly google searches equal 1,950,000,000 hours of human heart beats (3,900,000/.002kwh)
Monthly Google searches could power a human heart for 222,602 years
One Google search consumes as much power as your heart does in 9 minutes (.0003/.0000333)

Home Energy Data:
Average home uses 920 Kwh per month in the US
Google search uses .0003kw per search
Average Home Monthly Energy Usage equals roughly 3,066,666 searches (920kwh/.0003)
Google searches amount to roughly 3,900,000 KWH, this is enough to power 4,239 homes for each month (3,900,000kwh/920kwh)
One Google search uses One 3,000,000th the monthly power used by an average home.

CO2 Volume Data:
CO2 has a volume of 0.0019 grams per cubic centimeter as a gas.
1 cubic centimeter = 0.001 liters
One Google search creates .02g of CO2 which is 10.52cubic cm or .0105 liters
All monthly Google searches create 260,000,000g of CO2 or 136,842,105,263 cubic cm which equals 136,842,105 liters
Giants stadium has a volume of 64,500,000 cubic feet or 1,800,000,000 liters or roughly 12 times the CO2 output of 1 months google searches

*Images provided by unless otherwise noted.

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