Using the internet is very eco-friendly at first glance. People find all the info they need, stream movies and music, and can get a hold of books, articles, and promotional codes like the 1xbet promo code without using any paper. However, there are a few things about the internet that are hardly green. Let us discuss the carbon footprint of the internet.
Calculating the Carbon Footprint
While doing research for this piece, we have discovered that it is hard to accurately measure how much CO2 is released due to computers, phones, and other devices connected to the internet. We know that slightly more than half the world’s population is using the internet on various devices. Running these machines uses a lot of energy on a global scale, but there is also the issue of the eco-friendliness, or lack thereof, in terms of the components needed for these devices. Furthermore, the power to run these devices may not always come from renewable energy sources and there are not many organizations that can extract accurate information on the subject.
There is an article published in in 2009 in the Telecommunications Journal of Australia, entitled “Carbon footprint of the Internet”. In it, Jayant Baliga, Kerry Hinton, Robert Ayre, and Rodney Stuart Tucker from the University of Melbourne present a network-based model of the energy consumption of the Internet. Their paper estimates that every internet user in Australia is responsible for 81kg of CO2 emissions a year. Of course, the findings are 11 years old and the technology changes constantly. The paper can be read here.
Reducing the Carbon Footprint
Is it all bad? Not necessarily, especially when you consider the fact that the internet and other telecommunication services greatly decrease our need to travel, facilitate business meetings and legal processes. However, certain steps need to be undertaken in order for the carbon footprint to be reduced. Even small things like sending an email generate CO2 emissions. In theory, tons and tons of carbon can be eliminated per year if we were only to reduce sending emails simply to express gratitude. It’s not just emails, mind you. Unnecessary social media posts, especially if they are frequent, contribute to the problem if they are added up.
Doing some research on internet services and their effect on the environment can be of great help when trying to be eco-friendly. Bing, for example, is trying to reach negative carbon emissions, while some new search engines promote their services with their green policies. Eco Search, Eco Seek, My Eco Seek, and Ecosia, are just a few of the search engines that have green policies.
Storing your files on green cloud services is also one way to make sure you are using the internet responsibly. Some of these conscious clouds completely run on renewable energy. Finally, limiting the number of videos and songs we stream, watch, and listen to on the internet reduces the carbon footprint of the marvelous telecommunication service.
To put it simply, treat the internet the same way you would treat water in your home. It may run uninterrupted and you may even be on a plan that charges you a fixed rate no matter how much of it you use. However, that is no reason to be wasteful and use it when you don’t really need it.