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How often do you stop and think about your digital carbon footprint?

It has probably not escaped your notice lately. Almost every day you hear something about the environment. One moment we are dealing with a forest fire, and the next with a severe flood. Now is the time to think in terms of solutions instead of problems. It may surprise you, but your digital use has something to do with it too. But how can you reduce your digital carbon footprint?

How green is our online consumption

How green is our online consumption

What is a digital carbon footprint?

A digital carbon footprint is the CO2 produced during the production, use and data exchange between digital devices. When CO2 is produced by the Internet, the problem lies first of all with the production. Followed by the huge data centers that exist. The constantly running systems cause enormous amounts of CO2. Our devices also have to keep working. That's why we put them on the charger every time. Of course, charging these devices every time also consumes CO2. 

Your digital carbon footprint and its impact

You probably never think about it. But there is such a thing as a digital carbon footprint. A digital carbon footprint is the CO2 that is being produced as you surf the internet. Think for example of emails you send, videos you watch and websites you visit. As you may have guessed, this digital path also has an impact on our world.

Research has shown that 19 percent of Americans listen to sleep music. About 329.5 million people currently live in the United States. This is about 62,605,000 Americans. Watching a 30-minute video on YouTube consumes about 1.6 kilos of CO2. This is comparable to a 6.4 km drive with an average petrol car. Assuming that one video will run for 3 hours. Per American, this will already be 9.6 kilos per night. Do this 9.6 times 62,605,000 and you arrive at 601,008,000 kilos of CO2 in one night. 

How can you reduce your digital carbon footprint?

There are several things you can do as a company to reduce your digital carbon footprint. Here are 5 tips to lower the digital carbon footprint of your company.

  • Shut down all computers at the end of the day: many companies leave their computers on sleep mode after the premises are closed. Of course, these computers consume very little power when they are in sleep mode. However, they do consume CO2. Every little bit helps!
  • Regularly delete e-mails from your inbox: all the e-mails in your inbox lead to the production of CO2. This is because the e-mails all have to be stored in the data centres. This is why it is good to delete e-mails that are no longer important.
  • Clear inactive browser tabs: even inactive browser tabs still consume CO2. That's why it's good to be aware of this and click away your inactive tabs.
  • Lower your brightness: according to Eric Potkin of Harvard Law School, lowering your brightness from 100% to 70% will reduce your computer's energy consumption by 20%.
  • Use sustainable online tools: as is now clear, a lot of CO2 is released when using online tools. Fortunately, there are tools available today that work in a sustainable way. Greenzeen is one of them, read below how we compensate our CO2 consumption.

How Greenzeen tries to make a positive impact

Greenzeen is a sustainable online publication tool where all your magazines, brochures, annual reports etc. can be created online and read by your target group. Because Greenzeen already takes care of the reduction of printed paper, it is already sustainable in this respect. Still, the use of websites is not entirely sustainable. By measuring all data traffic, Greenzeen will compensate this CO2 consumption by planting trees in our own food forest. Are you curious about this new tool? Take a look at the Greenzeen website!

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