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And as the “internet of everything” brings innovations such as driverless cars and high-definition video watches ever closer, the vast network of data centres that have sprung up in the past decade will spread.
As a result, analysts forecast that data centres will consume roughly treble the amount of electricity in the next decade.
Governments across the world, including the UK, are starting to wake up to the data centre problem at the same time as they encourage the roll-out of data-hungry broadband networks to ever remoter locations.
The roll-out is primarily designed to help small businesses, but the bulk of the faster internet access is enjoyed by consumers.
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