Downloads Cut Software Industry’s Global Carbon Footprint by 80%

by | Jun 7, 2010

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Software downloads can cut the software industry’s global carbon footprint by 80 percent, according to, Deutsche Telekom’s UK software download portal, reports News Blaze.

Similarly, a study from Microsoft finds that online downloads of 10 million copies of Microsoft Office 2007, avoided eight times the amount of carbon emissions, or reduced the total tons of carbon emissions by 88 percent, compared to producing and shipping a DVD and its associated packaging through traditional retail distribution channels.

In Germany alone, Softwareload estimates, based on 2008 figures, that the annual carbon footprint created by traditional CD software production equals to 77,000m² of CDs and 6,132 tonnes of CO2 emissions.

“By downloading software packages, we cut out energy consumption involved in producing CDs, packaging and transporting them, as well as the fuel we use traveling to stores to buy them. Downloading personal and business software packages is a proven way to not only save the time and some of the expense involved in shopping for physical software packages, but we’ve also proven that it can help the environment too, which can only be a good thing,” said Dirk Lebzien, head of Softwareload, in the article.

Softwareload’s own research conducted by YouGov found that one in five (21 percent) of Britons now download and install software directly from the Internet.

Softwareload says it is carbon neutral, offsetting its CO2 emissions by investing in an environmentally friendly energy project in Brazil.

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