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  • Young Climate Warriors

Back to the classroom - time for a digital detox!

Updated: Mar 19, 2021

Lockdown and remote-schooling has meant lots of extra time on our devices, but now that schools have re-opened and you can see your friends again (at least in school) can you have a digital detox (detox means a short-time period when you stop doing something)?

Digital technology helps us in loads of ways… and has been incredibly useful during this Covid-19 pandemic. We have been able to stay connected to our family and friends, as well as teachers and classmates. Our digital interconnectedness can also help us fight climate change – Greta Thunberg has been able to share her message globally, David Attenborough’s films can be watched around the world, and we, as Young Climate Warriors can be part of a virtual team - letting people know we care about tackling climate change.

Yet, our increasing use of digital technology, is also contributing to climate change. Energy used by our devices might seem almost ‘invisible’. Have you ever thought about the electricity needed to power the ‘cloud’ and the ‘data centres’ storing all our files? The entire information technology (IT) sector - from manufacturing computers to powering and cooling internet servers to charging smartphones – is already estimated to produce 4% of global greenhouse gas emissions. That’s more than the aviation industry’s fuel emissions!

Your challenge this week is to pick a day for a ‘digital detox’ – can you have a whole day without electronic devices – and instead spend some time in the garden or park, play a board game, create a work of art or read a book? HIT THE RED BUTTONto let us know when 'challenge completed'!

How long do you actually think you spend watching videos on YouTube or Netflix or playing online video games … in one day… or one week? Next time you go online, can you time yourself to find out – it’ll probably be more than you think! Can you think more carefully about which games and films you’d like to watch. The more you reduce your time online the more you will be helping to combat climate change!

Electronic waste – also called ‘e-waste’ is a growing problem – people are encouraged to update their gadgets, and often do so without thinking about the carbon emissions related to creating and disposing of each and every device. If anyone in your family has an old smartphone, that still works but isn’t needed – you could donate it to others in need via the Hubbub Community Calling campaign.

Watching films over Wifi, rather than over your mobile network, can half your digital energy consumption – why not try watching more films together with your siblings or family – less gadgets means less energy consumed!

Remember to HIT THE RED BUTTON when you have completed your digital challenge. We’d love to hear what you get up to when you’ve switched off your electronics!


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