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Conference Papers Year : 2023

The Long Road to Sobriety: Estimating the Operational Power Consumption of Cellular Base Stations in France

Abstract

As the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector represents 1.8% to 3.9% of the global Green House Gas (GHG) emissions, it is of upmost importance to know how much energy is spent annually in mobile networks and how this consumption is evolving. It is quite likely that the huge energy efficiency gains achieved by technology evolution have at least been compensated by the surge in data traffic. Therefore, in this paper, we estimate the operational power consumption of cellular Base Stations (BSs) deployed in France from 2015 to 2022. However, unfortunately, the lack of openly available data hinders the estimation process. In order to work around this issue, we rely on a public dataset on radio electric installations, on widely adopted power consumption models and on a set of assumptions backed by the scientific literature. We demonstrate that, over the considered period, the numbers of BSs and transceivers have grown at a sustained Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 7.55% and 18.27%, respectively. Within the same period, the average BS power consumption has increased at a CAGR of 9.89% while the total operational power consumption of BSs has grown at a CAGR of 18.18%. We further show that the introduction of 5G has accelerated this trend despite the recent decommissioning of 2G and 3G transceivers. These alarming figures advocate for proactive digital sobriety policies.
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hal-04082598 , version 1 (26-04-2023)

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  • HAL Id : hal-04082598 , version 1

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Arsalan Ahmed, Marceau Coupechoux. The Long Road to Sobriety: Estimating the Operational Power Consumption of Cellular Base Stations in France. The International Conference on Information and Communications Technology for Sustainability (ICT4S), Jun 2023, Rennes, France. ⟨hal-04082598⟩
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