Tom Locke Headshot


Quick ways to reduce your personal digital carbon footprint

Sustainability, 12th January 2022

I have a personal digital carbon footprint?




Digital media and the internet has had a hugely positive impact on the fight against climate change and reduce CO2 emissions by facilitating information and conversation.


That being said, the internet and digital is also pretty dirty. We all have a personal digital carbon footprint and the production, usage and data transfer of digital devices causes more CO2 you might think.


Below are some easy things that you can put into action right now to help you get greener online!


😴 Avoid Sleep Mode

Regularly turning your laptop and other electrical devices off helps reduce energy usage. Although Sleep Mode may appear to use a small amount energy, it's effectively wasted.


💡 Turn down the brightness

It may seem super obvious, but lowering your screen brightness will improve its battery life and mean you'll need to charge less often. Turning your monitor brightness down from 100% to 70% can save up to 20% of the energy used. Plus, lowering brightness also reduces eye strain.


📬 Manage your inbox

Generally speaking the less emails you send the better, especially those 'reply all' emails to multiple people. Try to keep the your attachments a small as possible and use Rich Text format, which supports in-line attachments. Make sure you unsubscribe from newsletters you’re no longer interested in and regularly delete old emails to reduce data storage.


⬇️ Download rather than stream

Streaming is responsible for 300 million tonnes of CO2 emissions annually and it's a figure that's rising. Download the albums and movies you listen or watch to regularly to reduce your streaming impact.


🔎 Use a planet-friendly search engine

Every single Google search requires the same amount of energy as turning on a 60-watt light bulb for 17 seconds, this may not seem like much but it adds up quickly when you consider that 97,000+ searches are made every secondEcosia dedicate 100% of their profits to climate action, with at least 80% financing tree-planting projects. giveWater distribute the profits from ad revenue to water charities that provide clean water to those in need.


💻 Browse consciously

There are some surprisingly simple changes you can make to reduce the footprint of your day-to-day browsing; avoid having multiple tabs open at once, use bookmarks instead of search engines for the site you visit regularly, turn off autoplaying videos.


🛩 Switch to Airplane Mode

Stop you mobile device searching for a data connection by switching to airplane mode at night. Even better, turn it off!


🔌 Hook up directly

Wireless technology uses considerably more power, so use wired connections over wireless whenever possible and wi-fi over 3G or 4G.


So there you have it, eight easily achievable steps to help you reduce your digital carbon footprint today. If we all do a bit, it'll soon add up to a lot!

Like what you see? Help others discover this article.

As a sustainable Shopify development agency, we are passionate about educating and informing businesses about the importance of reducing their online carbon footprint. If you found this post insightful, please consider sharing it with your followers to help us spread this knowledge and inspire others to join us in this important mission.