Seducci goes digitally green

©liveenhanced.com

By Team Seducci

The earth is heating up, so time to make some changes!

The internet is one of the World’s largest polluters

Every bit is stored somewhere. And every bit that has to be readily accessible is stored on a server that is up and running 24/7. This obviously consumes a lot of energy. Not only to keep the ‘motor’ running, but also to cool the servers. Actually, about “40% of all of the energy used to power the internet is used to keep those servers from overheating.” (source: GreenGeeks).

©Elchinator | Pixabay

You might have seen them in the news. Data centers.

If it feels like the number of data centers is growing rapidly, you are correct. With almost everything becoming a ‘cloud’ object, the amount of server space needed is growing exponentially. And therefor the amount of energy needed to keep it all online, is also growing like crazy.

By 2040, carbon emissions are expected to grow to 14% of the world’s total.

Today, data centers already account for 2% of the world’s carbon emissions, equal to the airline industry. That is a tremendous amount. And with a lot of the energy still being produced by carbon polluting sources, this will become a massive problem.

©Google/Alphabet

The latest trend is for companies to setup new data centers in locations where there is access to sustainable energy. This sounds great of course, until you realize that the surrounding territory will be deprived of this renewable power, because there is simply just not enough green power being created. Problem not solved, only pushed forward.

So we asked ourselves the question, what can we do?

Our website Seducci.com is from now on hosted by GreenGeeks®. This company is committed to compensate the energy used by their servers. They call this their 300% eco-friendly hosting, because they compensate 3 times as much as they/we consume.

 

 

And besides this 300% compensation of the CO² emissions, GreenGeeks also plants a tree for every hosting account on their platform. This is done in cooperation with One Tree Planted. So, you could say there is a Seducci tree planted somewhere on this planet 😄.

©OneTreePlanted.org

If you made it this far into reading this story, you might also be interested in some ways of reducing your own digital carbon footprint?

We probably all know the obvious ways of reducing CO² emissions by; driving your car less, eat less meat, buy recycled and/or bio-friendly products, turn off electrical devices, consume less in general, etc…But I want to focus here on the digital footprint, as this is the topic of this story, but also because people are mostly unaware of the energy they consume daily by using the internet. Here are some tips:

1. Think before you click – photos/videos

Nowadays most phones are connected to a cloud service. With the convenience of backing up every photo you take, comes the downside of using server space. Take some time to delete photos and especially videos, as these take up way more data than images. And while you’re at it, create a nice photo album of the pics you do love.

2. Use wifi instead of mobile networks

Mobile networks have twenty times more impact in terms of energy use. Very high-speed communication technology via mobile networks places great demands on base stations. And in connection to the previous tip; you can choose to backup your photos and videos only when connected to wifi.

3. Delete emails

Empty your trash folder, delete old emails or archive them to your local hard drive. Storing an email on a server emits 10g of CO² on average, per year’s storage. You could also arrange your mailbox to list those that are the biggest in size and use that list to delete a good chunck of emails that eat up server space. So, this tip applies to IMAP email accounts, where you constantly sync your email between your email program and the mail server. But even if you store your email locally (POP3), the sending and receiving of emails also emits CO².

©mohamed_hassan | Pixabay

4. Think before you click – emailing

Sending an email emits on average 10g of CO2, equivalent to a light bulb turned on for 1 hour. So, consider this when writing several emails, when they could also have been reduced to a single one email. It is not just the amount of content (#bytes), but also the interactions between servers across the network that have to happen for every email exchange. You can also sign out of newsletters you don’t want.

5. Reduce your cloud

Limit your usage of the cloud and store your data on your computer or external hard drive. In our experience though, this is a difficult tip to stick to. You want important data, like work files, holiday photos, etc, to be safe and backed up. And what is better than to have that data on servers that run error correcting codes and have redundancy in place to make sure your data is safe and accessible.

But to make you feel better, streaming video on your phone will emit more CO² into the air than just storing data on a server. Just think of how many Word docs you need to write to get to like say 75MB, which is the equivalent of streaming a 5min video in 720p.

©mohamed_hassan | Pixabay

6. Watch fewer videos

Especially streaming videos from platforms like YouTube or Netflix on your phone via a mobile network is a worst case scenario. In fact, global online video consumption alone emits as many greenhouse gases as Spain does as a country in total (source: Impakter). So, to read a book, instead of consuming reels, is very very green.

7. Fewer web searches

Avoiding unnecessary or multiple searches is a quick way to avoid emissions. The loading of an average website uses about the same amount of energy as it does to boil a kettle with water. Apologies if browsing the internet feels different now after reading this. But this means you care 🌍🥰.

8. Use a green search engine

Switching to the search engine Ecosia would mean a tree is planted for every 45th search you make. And Ecosia also invests 80% of its profits into planting more trees.

 

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