Exploring the environmental impacts of the internet.

The internet's data centers alone have the same CO2 footprint as the global air travel industry.

Every website we browse, video we watch, and email we send will probably pass through a data center. These giant warehouse-like buildings house hundreds of incredibly power hungry server computers. These data centers use massive amounts of electricity, usually from fossil fuels which release a huge amount of CO2 into the atmosphere. The Internet will use a fifth of all the world’s electricity by 2025 and currently uses more electricity than the United Kingdom.

The internet is responsible for roughly one billion tonnes of greenhouse gases a year, or around two per cent of world emissions.
Source: What is the carbon footprint of the internet?, BBC Science Focus, 2022 .

Green web progress.

We're continuing to push for a more green internet - where websites are hosted with renewable energy and offset the emissions of their visitors, and we've made some progress.

Big brands such as Apple, Meta and Google already use 100% renewable energy.
Source: ClimateCare .

How much carbon does the internet release?

How you can reduce your online carbon footprint.

Cryptocurrency and NFTs.

Cryptocurrency mining is very energy intensive (it could be as much energy as the entire of Ireland uses) and has taken on industrial proportions in countries where there is cheap electricity and political favor.
NFTs and coins have huge environmental impacts to our planet and release tonnes of CO2 every year.

Bitcoin released 114.06 Megatonnes CO2 last year and releases 1170.91 kg CO2 per transaction. That's equivalent to 2,595,147 VISA transactions or 195,152 hours of watching Youtube.
Source: Bitcoin Energy Consumption, Digiconomist, 2022 .
A single NFT transaction on the Ethereum platform emits almost 150 kilograms of carbon dioxide, equivalent to 331,056 Visa transactions or 24,895 hours of watching YouTube. However, this may change soon.
Source: NFTs and the Environment, Investopedia, 2022 .

Solana, Algorand, Cardano, and Tezos offer energy-efficient NFTs which heavily reduce the environmental impact of transactions.

The Ethereum blockchain is about to become less of an energy hog thanks to a new "proof-of-stake" operating model. The official switch to this new model is planned to take effect in the second quarter of 2022, according to ethereum.org
Once the merge is complete, the expected energy consumption for a proof-of-stake Ethereum transaction should be the equivalent of 20 minutes of television.

The Internet Impact's website.

We wanted to show how easy it is to make an eco-friendly website. So we did! This site follows all the tips and tricks we recommend to developers just below this section.

Our website is cleaner than 90% of websites tested by The Carbon Calculator as of 20th June 2023, runs on 100% renewable energy, and only emits 0.10g of carbon per user. You can see the stats for yourself on our carbon calculator page.

You can never be perfect, but you can be better. Since we found that our website emits the same amount of carbon every year that a tree absorbs, we decided to get planting. We've already planted 60 trees as of 20th June 2023 with Krystal.uk's One Billion Trees pledge, the company that we host all of our PHP-based projects with. This website is hosted on Cloudflare, a well known eco-friendly host.

This website is hosted Green - checked by thegreenwebfoundation.org

This sounds like a lot of extra work, but it really wasn't. Learn how you can make your website eco-friendly in the section below.

Developers: How you can make your websites more green.

Reduce page size.
Minifying your code not only makes pages load faster, but it also saves on bandwidth, server power, and therefore electricity. Use WEBP images instead of JPGs or PNGs and reduce the amount of video on your site. Don't autoplay videos.

Switch to a green web host.
Green web hosts use renewable energy to host web pages. We even use one! You can find a list of green web hosts at the Green Web Foundation's Hosting Directory