Digital services should be ‘eco-labelled’ survey reveals
Nearly seven out of ten people in Sweden, Norway and Denmark, want to have eco-labelling of digital services according to a new survey commissioned by datacenter operator, DigiPlex.
Every time we stream a TV series, check social media or log in to our internet bank, a process starts in a datacenter that consumes energy and release CO2. Data centers and digital infrastructure are currently estimated to be responsible for three percent of global energy consumption and two percent of global CO2 emissions. Forecasts suggest this could rise to 5.5 percent of CO2 emissions within 5-10 years if unchecked.
The new research, conducted by Kantar/Sifo, shows that 66 percent of people in the Nordic region want to have eco-labelling of digital services. Even more, 69 percent, believe that it is important for digital services to have as little climate impact as possible.
“A large majority of Scandinavians want to be able to make sustainable decisions and reduce their climate impact – and this extends to their internet use.” reports Gisle M. Eckhoff, CEO at DigiPlex.
Not all data centers are the same, with newer, more efficient and more sustainable facilities having much lower carbon footprints. Eco-labelling would help consumers choose services that used more sustainable data centers, and force service providers to consider carefully the environmental impact of the location and operation of their data centers.
“If you stream a film through a power hungry data center that gets its energy from brown coal it will indeed contribute to climate change. Today’s consumers increasingly want to make an active green choice when it comes to using various internet services. Currently they do not have the information to make informed decisions,” says Gisle M. Eckhoff, CEO at DigiPlex.
But, at the same time, only a quarter of Scandinavians, 26 percent, are willing to reduce their use of internet and digital services, even if this would mean lower contributions to climate change.
“Internet usage is a natural part of our everyday life that few can or want to give up. But, with eco-labelling consumers can put pressure on suppliers to ensure digital services are climate smart, energy efficient, use reusable energy and have minimal CO2 emissions. It is also no surprise that 70 percent want suppliers of digital services to report their energy usage and climate impact in, for example, their Annual Report,” says Gisle M. Eckhoff.
Read article in Swedish, Norwegian or Danish.