There has been a longstanding debate on how much impact streaming platforms have on the environment. Carbon Trust, a non-profit group of experts, recently cleared up the area regarding this matter.
In a study they made in 2020, Carbon Trust found that: “Streaming your favorite hour-long television show is the environmental equivalent of boiling a kettle for six minutes or popping four bags of popcorn in the microwave, emitting around 55 grams of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere”. However, the impact of streaming the average of 203 million hours per day cannot be overlooked. It’s around 11 billion grams of CO2 per day emitted. So Netflix has decided to do something about it.
Earlier this year, Netflix announced its plan to achieve complete carbon neutrality by 2022. Dr. Emma Stewart, PhD, who has studied ecosystems and climate-change methodology, and now serves as Netflix’s Sustainability Officer, has detailed the streaming company’s plan to reach this goal, achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by the end of 2022, and every year thereafter. The plan is called Net Zero + Nature, and here’s how it works:
Step 1: Reduce Emissions
Everything starts at home, which is why Netflix will begin by reducing their internal emissions, so as to align with the Paris Agreement’s goal to limit global warming to 1.5°C.
Step 2: Retain Existing Carbon Storage
Netflix promises to neutralize emissions that couldn’t be avoided by investing in projects that prevent carbon from entering the atmosphere by the end of 2021, such as conserving at-risk forests.
Step 3: Remove Carbon From The Atmosphere
Not only does Netflix plan on preventing CO2 emissions, but it also plans to invest in restoration of mangroves and grasslands in order to promote carbon sequestration by the end of 2022.