Fashion website goes green as ecommerce looks to reduce energy emissions

An online fashion boutique has teamed up with the Eco-Friendly Web Alliance to transform its website to become “climate positive”.

East London-based 69b Boutique has undergone an optimisation process and received accreditation from the EFWA as it looks adopt a more sustainable digital approach. As part of this commitment, the Hackney company will work with web hosts which only use renewable energy, and commit to taking responsibility for their carbon footprint by investing in areas like reforestation and rewilding.

The agreement between the two organisations is part of a wider campaign to encourage businesses in the e-commerce sector to reduce the amount of energy their websites consume. The internet is responsible for around 10 per cent of the world’s electricity use, much of which is sourced from fossil fuels.

The EFWA says if websites across the globe consume less energy, considerable amounts of CO2 emissions will be prevented from entering the atmosphere. Optimisation includes cutting bloat, reducing image size and stopping the autoplaying of videos.

That in turn reduces the amount of electricity consumed by end-user devices like laptops and tablets, as well as transmission networks and data centres. The EFWA accreditation brings websites beneath one gram of CO2 emissions per page view, a limit set by the organisation’s board of scientific advisors as a responsible threshold.

In addition, the EFWA encourages businesses to work with host providers which only use green energy, and to take responsibility for their carbon footprint by investing in environmental projects like reforestation and rewilding.

Emma Bonar, owner of 69b Boutique, said: “Sustainability is at the heart of everything we do at 69b Boutique, so it’s important to us as a business that we do what we can to reduce our digital emissions. The carbon footprint of the internet is growing at an alarming rate, therefore it’s vital organisations take responsibility for their part in that.

“We’ve made a commitment to use green energy to power our website and take responsibility for its carbon emissions each year as part of this agreement.

Shane Herath, Chair of the Eco-Friendly Web Alliance, said: “No-one really thinks of the internet as something that damages the planet. But the electricity it consumes is eye-watering, and we need to do something about it.

“If websites themselves consume less energy, huge amounts of CO2 emissions could be prevented from entering the atmosphere. Fortunately, there is action we can all take to make this transformation more sustainable. By optimising their sites to consume less electricity, all organisations can play their part and it’s something that is very straightforward to do.”

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