Websites are an important part of our digital world, so we also ought to be aware of the amount of carbon they emit, consider their net and gross carbon footprint. What is the difference between the two? What role can traffic play in this?
Regardless of the website, when measuring its carbon footprint, it is important to consider not only the size of the site but also its traffic patterns, as the number of downloads increases with the number of users. Multiplying the net figure mentioned above by the number of visitors gives the gross (or total) carbon footprint. Consequently, as a website operator, we need to take traffic into consideration if we want to keep our carbon footprint as low as possible.
Since our goal with a website is hardly ever to reduce the number of visitors, the first thing we need to look at is the amount of carbon our website is emitting per download, as traffic can only increase this figure. How polluting is your website? The matrix below shows four groups representing net CO2e emissions. The larger the total net carbon emissions of the whole website or the average net carbon emission of a page, the more important it is to pay attention to the elements that are detracting from these values, and reduce their size.
It can be difficult to manage all the segments that contribute to your website’s carbon footprint separately, but by optimizing the size of your website, you can also reduce your carbon emissions as well. With our Website Carbon Monitor, we help environmentally conscious companies identify and reduce their carbon emissions by analyzing in real time the carbon footprint of websites alongside the impact of traffic.
Are you curious about how you can reduce the size of your website without compromizing on quality? Find out in our next article!