Travel, thanks to Covid, saw some worrying upticks in carbon emissions plummet these last two years. But one area with no letdown in site is gaming. Covid is keeping us indoors and along with home schooling, seniors and lonely singles –– along with long-time gamers spend an increasing amount of time online.
Some gamers live on the net, interacting with their multiplayer environment as though they were in real life. And they are infusing their values into the virtual world asking for the online games they play to support carbon offsets and renewable energy.
How can gamers support the environment:
Look to the social responsibility page of any game you start to play. The companies that invest in offsets or who build green servers powered by geothermal energy, wind energy or solar, are the first to brag about it.
When you enter the games of companies like that you might meet people who share the same values as you. There are some server companies that do loads for the environment so if you are a game builder yourself, get some inspiration from our visit to Finland and see how they are building low-energy “dungeon” servers in the basements of churches.
Bring solar energy to your home. It’s not just the servers that pump out carbon emissions that lead to climate change: any appliance you use from your home can be “greener” in a number of ways. Choose energy efficient screens and televisions and game systems that operate on less power. If you are able, and it might be a long shot for you, invest in solar energy for your home.
Solar energy isn’t an easy choice but if someone in your family is able to take charge we say make hay (and money) while the sun shines: We have a nice DIY guide to solar energy here.
Play games that match your values. Find games online that require more cooperation than killing. And if you are playing for stakes, consider ways of donating a percentage of your winnings. Some gaming companies are run by indiginous people, like in Canada, so when you support their games you also give back directly to their community.
Get out into nature. Like anything in life (ask your mother) balance is the key. Gaming isn’t bad for you. It’s just not good when you get too much of it. Look to the Japanese and forest bathing and the things they do to unplug from the world. You might find that getting out there will be the best inspiration for the next things you choose to do with your future.