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Carbon Footprint. Image Source: Treehugger.

For most of us, it is easy to assume that a paperless world does not do much damage to the environment. While using the internet and social media creates less damage rather than paper, it does leave a trail in the form of a carbon footprint, which is the amount of carbon dioxide released into the air. While you do not see the immediate physical impacts of the carbon footprint, a significant amount can be created to contribute to global warming.

Facebook has recently revealed its figures for 2011. According to Mashable, “the figure was good enough to earn the social network kudos from Greenpeace — and allowed it to look down its nose at less environmentally-friendly tech rivals, such as Google.”

Facebook released the figure of 285,000 metric tons of CO2 emissions in 2011 as compared to 1.5 million tons in 2010.

Facebook has stated that it has designed its servers to be as energy efficient as possible and also uses renewable energy sources. Facebook has also announced on its blog the annual amount of emissions for a typical monthly active user is 269 grams of CO2 per year.

The report states that, “one person’s Facebook use for all of 2011 had roughly the same carbon footprint as one medium latte. Or three large bananas. Or a couple of glasses of wine.”

Individually, it is not a big carbon footprint, but considering that Facebook has more than 950 million active users, it does need to find a strategy to bring down the carbon footprint of its company.


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