Why should you think twice before sending a thank you email?

At first glance, there is nothing wrong with sending a thank you email. Yet this simple gesture of courtesy would be environmentally harmful. This is the conclusion of a team of British researchers. They believe that reducing these “unnecessary” emails could “save a lot of CO2”.

Specifically, and only for the UK, sending one email less would save 16 tonnes of CO2 per day. According to our colleagues from Ouest-France, this abstract number corresponds to 80,000 flights between London and Madrid.

Video conferencing is also a target for some scientists

According to the same 2019 study, more than 64 million unnecessary emails are sent in the country every day. Under the affected messages we simply find “Thank you”, “Good evening”, “Have a good weekend”. So many expressions are completely unnecessary.

The poll ended up optimistically and showed that 71% of UK respondents would agree to stop sending this type of email for environmental reasons or to fight climate change.

Recently, other digital practices have been denounced for their environmental impact. This is the case with video conferencing, where if CO2 emissions are avoided, between 150 and 1000 grams of carbon dioxide per hour will also be produced. American researchers at Purdue University, MIT, and Yale suggest cropping the camera as much as possible. In this way, the space requirement could be reduced by 96%.

Kaveh Madani of Yale University, one of the authors of this study, explains: “Banks tell you the positive effects of dematerialization on the environment, but nobody tells you the benefit of turning off your camera or reducing the quality of your streaming. Without your consent, these platforms increase your ecological footprint. “

They also bring up the case of your streaming sessions. So if you watch your program in standard definition and not in high definition on one platform, emissions are reduced by 86%.

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