Awareness about Carbon Footprint

Veröffentlicht von Vandana Konda am

You have probably heard a lot lately about how important it is to reduce your carbon footprint and how to combat climate change. But what is that exactly?  

Just like an actual footprint, it is a mark you leave upon the environment. No, not with your shoes but with every action that releases carbon, those are the harmful gases such as co2, which are pumped out by burning fossil fuels, like oil or gas. And the more the fuel is used, the bigger the footprint will be.  

You might believe that the only carbons you produce while you drive your car comes from the engine, but this is untrue. Just getting fuel into the tank emits carbons that should be taken into consideration: Starting with the energy required to extract the oil from the earth, moving through transportation and processing, and ending with the delivery to your local gas station. Not to mention the co2 generated during the first stages of making your car. You underestimated it a bit, right? Therefore, unless you live in a cave, you and everything you own have a carbon footprint of your own: Read a book - printing and transporting it produces lots of co2. Brush your teeth and your tools will have a history in a factory. Even something as basic as an apple could have travelled hundreds or even thousands of miles to end up in your local supermarket. You see, it is pretty much impossible to leave no carbon footprint behind. But by thinking about your actions and personal choices, maybe you can make your feet just that little bit smaller and really help to put the boot into climate change.  

Now let us talk about basic statistics… 

The average carbon footprint per person in the Germany, where I live, is around 10 tons, and the United States around 16 tones, which is the highest. The global carbon footprint on an average per person is 5 tons but according to the scientific community expert’s calculation, the target has been fixed to 2 tons per person as an average globally in order to be carbon neutral. 

Let me give a broader example before moving to cloud carbon footprint… 

When we travel with a vehicle that burns fossil fuel, it clearly releases carbon into the atmosphere, but if we use an electric vehicle, then the question is how is the electricity produced? The United States and China being the largest producers of carbon footprint, use 65% of the electricity produced from fossil fuels, so there is a good chance that an electric car generates lots of co2.   

Cloud carbon footprint… 

For most organizations, the volume of carbon emissions is much greater from business operations than it is from core IT (Information Technology) services; however, business operations are incredibly complex and rarely in the CIO’s control. The nature of core IT services provides a much easier way to show progress and build momentum for educating employees and making the cultural shifts required to tackle the decarbonization of business operations. Fortunately, more enterprises are on the path to cloud adoption than ever. ISG’s 2022 Index research found annual contract value for Infrastructure-as-a-Service increased more than 50% year-on-year. Besides the many business and customer benefits, adopting cloud compute and storage solutions can reduce the emissions of running applications – by 90%+ for smaller deployments – when compared with use of on-premises infrastructure. 

Migrating to cloud is an incredibly good step, but not the ultimate solution…. 

Driving deep into the statistics, reveals that the cloud currently produces more carbon dioxide than the airlines industry. According to a survey from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, a single data center can use as much electricity as 50,000 houses. One strategy to improve your carbon footprint is to pay a certain amount of money to compensate the same amount of carbon emissions anywhere in the world, depending on your emissions like planting trees, building wind farms, and constructing solar power plants. However, growing trees will not make airplanes fly. Therefore, compensating does not keep fossil fuels underground. While we continue to extract them, it simply transfers the problem to another project somewhere else in the world. like killing panda bears and funding WWF to keep them safe. Carbon offsets should be seen as a wonderful way to fund planting trees and renewable energy projects around the world in order to transition away from fossil fuels but not as a long-term solution. The best strategy to reduce carbon footprint is to address its root causes so that carbon is not extracted in the first place.  

LET’S WORK TOGETHER TO MAKE WORLD MORE SUSTAINABLE… 

YOUNG GENERATIONS HAVE RIGHT TO LIVE THE LIFE, WHICH WE ARE ENJOYING TODAY  

Resources: 

https://isg-one.com/docs/default-source/default-document-library/1q22-isg-index.pdf?sfvrsn=494bd331_4


Vandana Konda

Certified FinOps Practitioner, with a special interest in Cloud Sustainability(GreeOps) and Cloud Cost Management.

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