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Did you know?

Making use of search engines has become the gateway to using the internet for many of us. Each second, we collectively search over 4 million times on Google alone. Each character we type in our search bar triggers a new request with autocomplete enabled, and each search uses many servers to list the answer. Since almost all of us never search beyond the first page, and we do not open more than 8 hits before searching again, we can conclude that many queries are unnecessary.

CO2 Impact Calculator

Each search request consumes an estimated 3Wh electricity. This means that the CO2 impact of searching is strongly correlated to the amount of search requests we do. Globally we perform 115 search requests per person per day. Seems a lot more than you do? Not quite, since autocomplete triggers new requests with every character you type in the search bar.


Do you want to embrace a greener digital lifestyle? Below we provide some tips. If you select one or multiple, it is stored locally. This is better for both CO2 emissions as it is for your privacy. By selecting a tip, it is added to your own battleplan, where you can always return to in the Take Action section.

  • Disable autocomplete

    The easiest and biggest impact you can make is by disabling the autocomplete function in your search engines settings. If you are an average searcher, this can slash your impact by a factor 15.

    Add to Take Action list:

  • Avoid unnecessary search requests

    A lot of the searches performed are in fact to visit websites visited before. It is a pity to use the power of search engines for this task. There is a better way.

    Add to Take Action list:

  • Use eco-friendly search engines

    The majority of us use Google as our standard search engine, but there are other, more eco-friendly and privacy friendly options out there.

    Add to Take Action list:

Did you know that search engines do not rank and list websites, they rank and list web pages.

Each page on a website is scanned for key words and phrases and listed and ranked according to the search engines formula. This means any page on any website can appear in the search results. This process is so demanding that a single search uses around the same amount of computing power it took to send the Apollo 11 astronauts to the Moon. Our searches on Google consume a whopping 63.000 GW per year. This is almost 3 times the total Dutch renewable energy production. They claim to be using 100% sustainable energy for their operations, but this includes a large portion of energy from biomass.