3 ways to reduce the carbon footprint of your website
Did you know that if the Internet was a country, it would be the 7th largest polluter?
Every time someone visits your website, carbon dioxide gets emitted: the average website produces 1.76 grams of CO2 per page view.
Because we generally want more people visiting our website, this adds up. For an average website with 10,000 page views per month, that’s 211 kg of CO2 per year.
Thankfully, we can take action to reduce the carbon impact of our website.
Measure the carbon emissions from your website
Use the Website Carbon Calculator to get an estimate of the CO2 emissions per page view of any individual web page. It also estimates annual CO2 emissions and annual energy consumption, and tells you if the website is powered by renewable energy.
Ecograder is another useful tool and gives you insights to help optimize your website for sustainability.
Using this data as a baseline, now you can work to reduce your website’s carbon emissions:
1. Reduce and optimize images
The more images you use, the higher the carbon footprint of your website. So think: are all those images really necessary? If they are, make sure to compress them using a tool like TinyPNG to reduce their draw on energy without losing any noticeable quality.
2. Limit video and avoid autoplay
Videos are incredibly carbon intensive. Again, consider whether they’re really necessary and, if so, turn off autoplay—let’s save those emissions for the visitors who actually want to watch your video.
3. Choose green hosting
No matter how much you optimize your site, the data centres powering it use a lot of energy. So make sure to choose a hosting provider that uses renewable energy. The Green Web Foundation has a directory of green hosting providers.
These tips can get you started. Check out Sustainable Web Design for more useful resources to help you reduce your website’s carbon footprint.
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