The rapid development of artificial intelligence (AI) based on genetic reproduction is projected to consume the same amount of electricity every year until 2027 as the entire country of Spain used in 2022, according to new models from Morgan Stanley[^1^]. The growth of the Generative AI industry is expected to see its power consumption increase by 70% annually, from less than 15 terawatt-hours (TWh) in 2023 to a staggering 224 TWh by 2027 – almost as much as the 230 TWh used by Spain throughout 2022[^1^].
However, an optimistic report from Morgan Stanley suggests that the AI sector is poised to have a positive net impact on the planet’s climate, arguing that widespread use of clean energy by the Generative AI industry will help reduce carbon emissions more than it produces. The potential of AI to help the world increase network efficiency and develop new emission reduction technologies, including carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) systems, outweighs the emissions caused by the industry’s power consumption, according to the report[^1^].
Energy experts have previously expressed concerns about dependency on emerging technologies, including carbon capture and storage (CCS) and CCUS, as means to combat global warming, as their effectiveness in the real world remains unproven. Conversely, the increased energy demand from the AI sector will likely necessitate large-scale expansion of new clean energy production capacity, as stated in the Morgan Stanley report, highlighting that renewable energy companies and data center infrastructure companies will benefit from AI development[^1^].
Morgan Stanley’s report addresses concerns from experts and investors that the development of environmentally conscious AI will lead to increased fossil fuel usage and carbon emissions contributing to global warming. Experts have warned that the increased power demand from the AI sector will likely result in a rise in fossil fuel consumption, even if the sector operates on clean energy sources, since the increased demand will force other sectors to use hydrocarbons instead. The situation could worsen due to the rising demand for clean energy from competing sectors – including the green steel industry and energy for an ever-growing fleet of electric vehicles (EVs) – potentially leading to supply shortages[^1^].
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
1. What is genetic reproduction in the field of AI?
– Genetic reproduction in AI refers to the rapid development of the Generative AI industry, which is based on algorithms that mimic biological evolution.
2. What is the prediction for the power consumption of the Generative AI industry?
– The prediction is that the power consumption of the Generative AI industry is expected to increase by 70% annually, reaching 224 TWh by 2027. This amount of electricity is almost equivalent to that used by Spain in 2022.
3. What is the positive impact projected for the Generative AI industry on the climate?
– The widespread use of clean energy by the Generative AI industry is expected to help reduce carbon emissions more than it produces. Additionally, AI has the potential to increase network efficiency and contribute to the development of emission reduction technologies.
4. What is the concern raised by experts regarding dependency on the AI sector?
– Experts are concerned that the increased power demand from the AI sector will lead to a rise in fossil fuel consumption, even if the sector operates on clean energy sources. This is because the increased demand will compel other sectors to use hydrocarbons instead.
5. Which sectors are expected to benefit from the development of AI?
– The Morgan Stanley report indicates that renewable energy companies and data center infrastructure companies are likely to benefit from the development of AI.
6. What is the conclusion of the Morgan Stanley report?
– The Morgan Stanley report displays optimism about the growth of the AI sector, stating that its positive impacts outweigh the negative ones, including carbon emissions caused by high power consumption.
– Morgan Stanley