The internet is a real climate sinner. Every search, every website visit consumes energy when web servers are activated to satisfy our need for information or entertainment.
The CO2-Neutral Website initiative
As a creative agency Phosworks is part of that internet ecosystem and, one could even say, part of the problem. This is why Phosworks has been partnering with the Danish company CO2 Neutral Website since 2018 to contribute to the neutralization of our carbon emissions. https://www.co2neutralwebsite.com
As a member of the CO2-Neutral Website initiative Phosworks pays a fee for the carbon emissions of our website (more details about how it works below). The fee is based on average consumption for hosting and the number of visitors and their behavior on the site.
The membership program finances Gold Standard projects which are high-quality projects with a high level of carbon neutralisation (such as contributing to renewable energy sources around the world). You can read about the Gold Standard projects here.
A small step
Of course, no climate compensation program is a long term solution for one of, if not the greatest challenges facing humanity but it’s a step in the right direction until we have technologies for a sustainable internet. However we think that compensating for the emission 1) forces us to acknowledge that the problem exist 2) put on price and cost on the problem which creates an incentive to solve it.
We believe that nature is cool (that’s actually one of our three guiding principles) so no step is too small to protect what we love.
How does the program work
Here is what CO2 Neutral Website write about the program:
How we calculate your website’s CO2 emission
We take your servers, your data traffic and your visitors’ consumption into account, and then we add a buffer.
How much power does a webserver consume?
We assume a web server is running 24/7/365. The effect of a small server typically amounts to 200 Watt, but it’s now normal to use large hosting solutions which means bigger servers but more sites on the same server. This results in a smaller power consumption per website. Nevertheless, we have chosen to calculate 200 Watt which gives us a comfortable buffer.
How much power does a website visitor consume?
Our starting point is a standard laptop with a 17” screen. It consumes 173 Watt. To this we add the consumption of the router and thus arrive at 200 Watt per user. However, page views are more important for your visitors’ power consumption.
On how many page views do we base our calculations?
We base our calculations on the number of monthly page views reported by our members. Page view numbers are not publicly available information, so we trust our members. To be on the safe side, we ask you to report your page views as a traffic interval. This ensures that we always estimate your traffic higher than it actually is.
How much power does a page view consume?
Our variable for time-on-page comes from Nielsen Online who calculates monthly statistics in this field. Their average time-on-page is calculated to ca. 50 seconds. We set our baseline to 60 seconds which gives us a 20% buffer. We don’t ask you to reveal how much time your visitors spend on your site. That can be considered a trade secret. However, we use the advantage of having a lot of members. Some have more traffic than expected, others have less.
How much power do the cables between servers and data centers consume?
We estimate the power consumption of the data cables that connect servers and users to be 1 Watt/month per page view. As a baseline, we set every month to 31 days which actually gives us a 2% buffer because some months have 28 or 30 days. For websites that have extreme traffic numbers, we can make more specific calculations.