Open Source Projects to Help Measure and Manage Energy Use

As the destructive effects of climate change become more apparent, “we need to fight climate change with both sword (cutting our emissions to fight further increases in warming) and shield (protecting ourselves from climate change’s increasing effects),” says the World Economic Forum

Both control and mitigation approaches must be pursued, and “everyone must be involved in deciding how societies will adapt,” says this COP27 report

FOSSlife Open Source JobHub

One way to get involved is through open source. For example, we previously mentioned the Protontypes website as a valuable resource for finding projects that are actively working toward a more sustainable future. The site provides a lengthy, curated list of open technology projects that can provide key information and help shape critical climate solutions. 

The list includes more than a thousand projects in categories such as:

  • Climate Science, including earth and climate modeling, meteorological observation, and forecasting
  • Consumption of Energy and Resources, including heating and cooling, transportation, and production and industry
  • Natural Resources, including air quality, water supply, agriculture, and nutrition
  • Renewable Energy, including solar, wind, geothermal, hydro, and bioenergy

In this article, we’ll highlight projects that relate to measuring the energy consumption and/or carbon footprint of various computing tasks.

Sample Projects

The following open technology projects fall under the heading of Computation and Communication, which is part of the larger Consumption of Energy and Resources category. The subcategory contains many projects, so this list offers only a sampling: 

  • Argos — A tool to measure consumption of a given Docker command and see its performance evolution.
  • Carbontracker — Track and predict the energy consumption and carbon footprint of training deep learning models.
  • Cloud Carbon Footprint — A tool to estimate energy use (kilowatt-hours) and carbon emissions (metric tons CO2e) from public cloud usage.
  • Energy-Languages — The complete set of tools for energy consumption analysis of programming languages, using Computer Language Benchmarks Game.
  • Energyusage — A Python package that measures the environmental impact of computation.
  • FEEP — Improve the energy efficiency of free and open source software.
  • Green Cost Explorer — See how much of your cloud bill is spent on fossil fuels.
  • Grid-intensity-go — A tool written in Go to help you factor carbon intensity into decisions about where and when to run computing jobs.
  • Kube-green — A Kubernetes operator to reduce CO2 footprint of your clusters.
  • LEAF — Simulator for modeling energy consumption in cloud, fog, and edge computing environments.

We’ll share more climate-focused projects in future articles.

Learn More

4 Ways Software Developers Can Fight Climate Change from FOSSlife
ESGF Makes Climate Data Easier to Access from FOSSlife
The Environmental Costs of Cryptocurrency from FOSSlife
This climate action tracker shows what we’re doing right — and wrong — on the road to net-zero emissions from World Economic Forum
Visualizing the Open Source Sustainability Ecosystem — FOSSlife 

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