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Digital: 5 major eco-gestures to adopt easily


April 12th, 2021 - 6pm

New technologies and the way we use them on a daily basis are not without consequences for the environment. However, small, simple gestures can greatly reduce our digital carbon footprint.

Sort, clean, delete

The use of digital technologies results in the production of billions of pieces of data, all the time. This data is stored in data centers and on servers that need energy to operate.

To avoid unnecessary consumption, a simple reflex consists of regularly cleaning up the data you store, whether in the cloud or on hardware. For example, delete emails you no longer need, keep only the photos you need, or use local storage on your device or an external hard drive. You can also get into the habit of frequently deleting your browsing history and cookies and unsubscribing from newsletters you never read. Platforms such as Cleanfox, for example, allow you to quickly delete and stop newsletters that don't interest you.

Browse differently

Did you know that an Internet query consumes as much energy as a low-energy light bulb turned on for an hour? So how can you browse more sustainably?

There are solidarity search engines, such as Ecosia, which help to offset the environmental footprint of web searches. A large part of the profits generated by its activity are donated to organisations involved in reforestation. Every time you launch your search engine, you contribute to the planting of a tree somewhere in the world.

To reduce the environmental impact of browsing the internet, it is also recommended to bookmark web pages that you visit regularly, enter the address of the site you want to visit directly and close tabs that you no longer use.

Watching videos on the web is also very energy consuming. So if possible, avoid streaming and download instead. You can also reduce the resolution of the videos you watch according to the size of your screen. On a smartphone, for example, there is no point in watching a video in HD!

Barbara Fangille, Head of Communication - Orange Luxembourg

"We are all players in the environmental transition. At Orange Luxembourg, we are also making our contribution by applying eco-gestures in our communications activities. From the design of our messages to the eco-design of our campaigns, we are taking care of our environmental footprint."

Watch the interview of Barbara FANGILLE

Recycle your devices

We don't think about it often enough, but it's important to remember that computer and electronic equipment can be recycled! Computers, tablets and smartphones, in particular, contain rare resources and metals such as aluminum, copper, silver, tantalum, tungsten and lithium that can be reused for other purposes. Instead of leaving your old devices hanging around in a closet, bring them back to a recycling facility.

Orange Luxembourg, for example, will take back your old smartphone to give it a second life and trade it in for a nice discount - up to €400 depending on the model - on your brand new mobile. That's good for the environment and good for your wallet!

Manon Donati, Shop Sales Advisor - Orange Luxembourg

"In shops, environmental awareness is essential, both for customers and for employees. At our level, we apply simple actions such as the digitalisation of the purchasing process, or the use of recyclable bags created in the workshops of the Kraïzbierg Luxembourg Foundation."

Watch the interview of Manon DONATI

Adopt a more conscious behaviour

Technological devices - computers, phones, connected objects, television, etc. - are power-hungry. An internet box, for example, uses as much electricity in a year as a fridge! However, it is possible to reduce this consumption with a few small reflexes.

Once you have finished your work, turn off your computer and do not leave it plugged in. When you take a break, put it on standby and remove the screen savers that unnecessarily consume battery power. Don't leave your chargers plugged in "empty" and remove them when your devices are fully charged. Whenever possible, lower the screen brightness on your computer and smartphone and disable Bluetooth and GPS functions. You should also use black screensavers, which consume less energy. Finally, remember to switch off your Internet box and TV when you no longer need them, before going to bed for example.

Limit your e-mails

An e-mail of one megabyte generates an average of 20 grams of CO2. Sending 20 e-mails a day for a year is therefore equivalent to driving 1,000 km in a car in terms of CO2 emissions.

The heavier an email is, the larger its carbon footprint. So think about compressing the size of the files you send as attachments, replacing them with hyperlinks or using temporary deposit sites like WeTransfer (the data is deleted after a few days). Forget the "reply to all" function when it is not necessary: multiplying the number of recipients of an email by 10 means quadrupling its environmental impact. Choose an email signature without images or logos. And whenever possible, get up to see your colleague rather than sending an email. It's also better for your health!

Delphine Guilbert, HR Director - Orange Luxembourg

"At Orange, we want to become carbon neutral by 2040, 10 years before the Paris agreements. This ambitious but necessary goal is achieved step by step, which is why we have landlined a first step in 2025, which consists of reducing our CO² emissions by 30% compared to 2015."

Watch the interview of Delphine GUILBERT