Research has been conducted on electricity use associated with adigital services, but to date no complete study of television distribution has been conducted. Here the authors present the first assessment of electricity used for distribution and viewing of television over different distribution platforms terrestrial, satellite, cable and online streaming. It uses a novel methodology that combines life cycle assessment techniques with models of the diversity of actual user behaviour, derived from detailed audience monitoring and online behaviour analytics data.
Using behavioural data to assess the environmental impact of electricity consumption of alternate television service distribution platforms
Does not compute: Avoiding pitfalls assessing the Internet's energy and carbon impacts
Koomey and Masanet published a peer-reviewed commentary in the journal Joule, discussing the pitfalls that plague estimates of the internet’s energy and carbon impacts.
The paper describes how these errors can lead well-intentioned studies to predict massive energy growth in the information technology sector, which often doesn’t materialize. “We’re not saying the energy use of the internet isn’t a problem, or that we shouldn’t worry about it,” Masanet explained. “Rather, our main message is that we all need to get better at analysing internet energy use and avoiding these pitfalls moving forward.”
White paper: The carbon impacts of video streaming
A new white paper published by the Carbon Trust estimates an average carbon footprint of 55gCO2e per hour of video streaming in Europe in 2020, with viewing device as the largest determining factor. The white paper was developed in close consultation with DIMPACT.
The true carbon impact of streaming
What’s the true impact of streaming on the climate? Some studies have tried to answer this question, but it’s hard to get right. Delivering an episode of Shadow and Bone to your screen requires different technologies that are constantly evolving - from the data centers where the data is housed, to the infrastructure that brings the internet to your home, to the electricity powering how you enjoy the show. Measuring those emissions took a lot of guesswork, resulting in studies with inaccurate estimates and myths - until now.
The carbon footprint of streaming video: fact-checking the headlines
In this updated analysis, George Kamiya challenges the assumptions made by some estimates of the carbon impacts of video streaming. The article provides an estimate of the emissions based on the most up-to-date information (at the time of publishing).