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How much energy do Youtube videos use?

By April 21, 2016videos

How much energy do Youtube videos use?

Although we usually don’t think about it, watching Youtube videos uses energy too. How much? This video by Minute Earth will give you a very good answer is just under 2 minutes. Studies show that a AA battery worth of energy will get you around 10MB of data. A 3-minute live action video is around 30MB so it drains around 3 AA batteries worth of energy to stream or download. Because drawing videos contain simple visuals, they can be stored as smaller files and transferred more efficiently. Minute Earth videos, much like our own Sustainability Illustrated videos, use 2 to 3 batteries worth of energy to watch once taken into account the energy needed to display it on a laptop or smart phone. Multiplied by hundreds of thousands of view, it is a lot of energy!

Our drawing videos present a lot of advantages as they make it possible for tens of thousands of people to learn about sustainability for free without travelling but they use energy nonetheless. This is a good reminder that the way energy is produced is key and that watching a video powered by renewable energy would have less sustainability impact than watching it powered by fossil fuels.

You can find the references used in this video in its description. You can also support Minute Earth on Patreon.

Alex Magnin

Alex Magnin is a sustainability consultant and illustrator, the founder of AM Creative Inc. and the creator of Sustainability Illustrated. He creates animation videos and cartoons to illustrate sustainable change using years of experience drawing and working as a sustainability consultant with businesses and communities.

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