Is my website environmentally friendly?

How green is my website?

This is a question some of our clients have asked us recently, and it’s a topic we know is becoming more important as organisations seek to be fully transparent about their carbon footprint.

When we were asked how much CO2 a client website produced, we decided to do some digging to really understand the answer! So we got our Web Director, Luke, on the case.

With a little help from our website host, Amazon AWS, he discovered that all of our websites combined used less than 0.1 MTCO2e (metric tonne of CO2) per year. Based on figures available online, this means the annual CO2 emissions of an average Umber Creative website roughly equates to running a 42 watt halogen bulb for one day (if powered by a gas station). 

This was a really interesting research project, and reassured us that our websites aren’t contributing huge amounts of CO2 to the atmosphere.


However, we’re always looking for ways to improve, so we set about finding out how we could make our websites even greener. 

Here’s some top tips we can all follow to reduce our website’s impact on the environment:

Understand your web hosting provider’s energy mix

The first thing you need to understand is that data centres consume a lot of energy. They run thousands of servers simultaneously and require enough power to keep them cool. Also, should a power outage occur, they need features such as diesel backup generators to ensure service is maintained. 

That said, some suppliers do utilise renewable energy. All of our websites are hosted by Amazon AWS, which uses over 95% renewable energy and estimates this will be 100% by 2025. 

Implement conscious design

Videos, large imagery and animation are all common features of most websites these days thanks to faster internet and page load speeds. But do these features, which ultimately require more energy to navigate, result in websites that are great for end users but not for the environment?