The world of tech is often seen as the hero that will swoop in and save us all from the onset of the climate emergency. The phrase, “think of how many trees you’ll save by going digital and not using all that paper!” oft-uttered in the past by curmudgeonly office managers, exemplifies this attitude. There is a valid point here, it really can be better to just use a Google doc than to scrawl and scratch through notepad after notepad until your bins are overflowing. The issue is that with an electronic document, you don’t see the bins overflowing. You’ve not solved the issue—improved it, surely—but not solved. It has been moved out of sight, and out of mind. Well we’ve decided to recognise that those bins are overflowing, and it’s time for us to take them out.
So how do you green a tech company? Where do you start? Tech is a complex beast with tendrils so plentiful and mercurial that no one person can have a truly in depth understanding of every part. This complexity makes the problem seem unsurmountable, but where there’s a will, there’s a way! First, I was recently appointed a green ambassador and I have set out to surround myself with a passionate, talented, and diverse group of people that all want to make a difference (luckily we’re quite a passionate, talented, and diverse bunch, so the search didn’t take long!). Now I'm working with the green team to apply systems thinking to the problem, and togther we are learning how to measure and control our impact, and hunting out the key levers of influence.
We have only just begun our journey to being green. We think it’s an interesting and worthwhile quest, and we promise to share our learnings, challenges, and triumphs with you along the way.
One handy tool that has helped us on our way is in the spotlight thanks to the #letsgreentheweb campaign this week. We put our website, www.rocketmakers.com through its paces using the website carbon calculator and found that it is cleaner than 53% of other web pages tested and only provided 0.87g of CO2 every time someone visits our web pages. Our green ambitions stretch further than that though and we’re looking at efficiency improvements and potential hosting options to reduce our impact even further.
I was pretty shocked to discover that it is estimated that if the internet were a country, it would be the world’s seventh biggest polluter. So I am inviting you all to join us and #letsgreentheweb together by using the carbon calculator to assess your impact and working together to reduce the negative impact of our industry.
Photo by Jason Blackeye on Unsplash