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Cybershopping for the holidays means lower carbon emissions

internet-and-futureYour holiday shopping carbon footprint will be a lot lower if you make your purchases online instead of heading out to the shops, a new study has found.

Released today by green IT analysis firm GigaOM Pro, the study by sustainability consultants MindClick GSM found that — dollar for dollar — the greenhouse gas emissions associated with an in-store purchase is 15 times higher than that from online shopping. Overall, the carbon impact of the post-Thanksgiving “Black Friday” shopping spree is 50 times greater than that of “Cyber Monday,” according to the research.

Triple Pundit notes, however, that the study did not include several potentially significant factors into the comparison, including packaging differences (while in-store purchases tend to be carried out in a single paper or plastic bag, online buys are shipped in cardboard boxes stuffed with packing material) and the carbon footprint of the online shopping network itself.

1 Comment

  • Kirsten@Nexyoo
    Posted December 14, 2009 at 6:03 pm

    Online shopping is definitely a great option. If you live in an area where you’re able to walk to locally-owned shops, that’s a good choice too.

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