For a while I’ve been intending to make my website more sustainable, but I succumbed, as I often do, to the human trait of sloth. But this morning after reading Gerry McGovern’s post on webwaste, I thought I’d procrastinated long enough.
But how much energy? I used the Website Carbon Calculator to find out. It turns out that
- 6.90g of CO2 is produced every time someone visits the homepage
- it emits the amount of carbon that 4 trees absorb in a year, and
- it uses enough electricity to drive an electric car 1,116km
Eugh. That’s disgusting. For each year my website has been online, I should have planted 4 trees just for the homepage alone. But, instead, my laziness has filled the atmosphere with more and more carbon.
I have to do something, this has gone on long enough, so I’m committing to some actions.
- I’ll move my site to a web hosting provider using renewable energy, one that’s listed on the Green Web Foundation’s directory. ✅
- I’ll compress and optimise the images on my site using ImageOptim. ✅
- I’ll get rid of my energy-guzzling site theme until I can introduce one that’s lightweight and accessible. ✅
- Going forward, my website will enshrine the principles of the Sustainable Web Manifesto. 📝
- I’ll pay for some trees to be planted that’ll reduce the impact of my website’s carbon footprint going forward. ✅ View the certificate 📜
To show my commitment to being a good web citizen, I’ll add the Website Carbon Badge to all pages ✅ and the Green Web Foundation’s renewable hosting badge ✅. Once I’ve improved things, I’ll add a carbon.txt ✅.
One day I’ll actually get around to building a solar-powered battery bank and run my site off my home connection, but until then I’m taking small steps to remove, minimise and clean-up my presence on the web.
What’s the carbon footprint of your website? What steps will you take to reduce it?
- The bullshit web
- 3 steps to creating zero carbon websites
- How to build a low-tech website
- Greening Internet governance: environmental sustainability and digital transformation
It has been great to read everyone’s responses to this post, even those questioning the merit of reducing carbon emissions on a personal website. Here’s action others have decided to take on their own websites.
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