Our Gadgets are Costing Us Billions in Energy

Adam Eisman - Contributing Writer
Posted on Friday 22nd May 2009

Many chargers, whether they are for phones, laptops or other fun little gadgets, suck energy out of the wall even when the device they are to be charging is not hooked up. When you add in the poor efficiency of most gadgets, it is easy to understand why the International Energy Agency has recently released a finding that says without action, these products will suck up 1,700 terrawatt-hours of electricity by 2030, which would roughly cost about $200 billion dollars.

The agency doesn’t want consumers to give up their gadgets, unless you really have more than you can use and they simply waste space on top of energy, but rather a shift in priorities for gadget producers. The loss of energy will mostly be on account of the poor efficiency standards of most electronics. Many companies are now attempting to make their products more efficient, but to extend battery life, and not to conserve.

Something needs to be done on the large scale to improve the efficiency of our electronic goodies, as devices like personal computers and DVRs swallow up huge quantities of energy, and were never meant to act sustainably. While oodles of terawatt hours and billions of dollars seem extraordinarily high for something so small, it should be noted that these figures are the aggregate over the next 20 years.

That is not to say that there isn’t a problem, which there is. With better standards and sustainability in mind, the electricity intake of these appliances can be reduced dramatically.

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