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Data Centres

The Explainer x Noteworthy: Are data centres ramping up Ireland’s emissions?

Niall Sargent of Noteworthy and UCD’s Dr Patrick Brodie tell Susan Daly about our latest investigation.

LAST UPDATE | 19 Dec 2022

“IT’S JUST INCOMPATIBLE with our climate commitments.”

This is how one climate activist described the rapid expansion of the energy-hungry data centre industry in the latest in-depth series by investigative platform Noteworthy.

In our LIGHTS OUT series on the energy crisis, investigative reporter Niall Sargent took a deep dive into the industry that went from a blip on the international radar a decade ago to become Europe’s largest data centre market.

We found that onsite carbon emissions at data centres have ballooned to 35 times higher within a decade, with an increasing number of emissions licence applications for increased us of diesel-powered emergency generators or construction of onsite gas plants now before the EPA.

This week, as a bonus episode of The Explainer brought to you by Noteworthy, Susan Daly chats with Sargent and Dr Patrick Brodie, an assistant professor in UCD researching the environmental politics of digital infrastructure, about the carbon footprint of the sector.

The Explainer / SoundCloud


This episode was put together by Susan Daly, Niall Sargent and producers Laura Byrne and Nicky Ryan.

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