Networks consume a lot of power. I don't know how much power Telstra uses each year, but it must be an enormous amount.
And now we are going to duplicate an existing network, which will also require an enormous amount of power to run.
Assuming they are rolling out a 100MB Ethernet network, as opposed to a cable network, each house will need a device like a Cisco ME 3400-2CS to be installed. I'm sure they'll use a Chinese device instead, given that they are cheaper than Cisco, but some sort of fibre or copper Ethernet termination device will be required.
The ME 3400-2CS typically draws 15 watts. 8 million homes times 15 watts equals a lot of power in the aggregate.
The equipment at the other end will draw - I have no idea actually. There's lots of other bits of networking equipment in exchanges and data centres everywhere to provide the backbone. Those will draw masses of power. They also need huge air conditioners to cool them.
In short, Kevin is building an enormous greenhouse gas generating system at a time when we are not building any more generating capacity.
How is that going to work? What is the point of having a carbon reduction scheme on the one hand, and then a massive new energy consuming system on the other? Do these guys have a clue?
According to page 7 of Telstra's corporate responsibility report for 2008, they consumed 6,064,687 gigajoules, which works out at 1,684,635,277 kilowatt hours. This is the equivalent of 1,500,803 tonnes of CO2 emissions.
Will the new network draw more power or less? My guess is more, because of the higher bandwidth on offer.
So let's add another 1.5 million tonnes of CO2 emissions to our annual output, at a time when the government is trying to cut them back by a substantial amount.
Roll on more hot summers and melting polar bears! All for the sake of faster porn downloads and pirate movies.