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Zoom today announced its Green Leader customers, the 10 companies estimated to be avoiding the most carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by replacing face-to-face, in-person meetings with face-to-face Zoom video meetings. In total, the top 10 were estimated to have avoided 685,205 metric tons of CO2 in the 90 days preceding October 31, 2019, the equivalent of the annual CO2 emissions from 148,958 cars, and the equivalent of 11,420,077 trees planted.
While face-to-face meetings are essential to sustain and grow businesses, hosting these meetings in person can have adverse effects on the environment. Local meetings reached by car commute create literally tons of CO2 a year. With an average daily round trip commute of 30 miles, the annual CO2 emissions for a typical passenger vehicle is 4.6 metric tons (epa.gov). Air travel is even less efficient. A single economy class round-trip flight from San Francisco (SFO) to New York (LGA) expels 1.4 tons of CO2 (co2.myclimate.org). While air travel currently accounts for 2.5 percent of global CO2 emissions, this emissions source is growing at a faster rate than predicted in previous, already dire, projections (nytimes.com).
The top 10 Green Leaders that were estimated to have avoided the most CO2 emissions through the use of Zoom’s video-first unified communications platform during the three months preceding October 31, 2019, were:
The Green Leader in the #1 spot, saved 170,363 metric tons of CO2 in the 90 days preceding October 31, 2019, the equivalent of the annual CO2 emissions from 37,035 cars, and the equivalent of 2,893,382 trees planted. In total, the top ten were estimated to have avoided 685,205 metric tons of CO2 in the 90 days preceding October 31, 2019, the equivalent of the annual CO2 emissions from 148,958 cars, and the equivalent of 11,420,077 trees planted. The vast majority of CO2 emissions savings realized was from plane travel, as opposed to motor vehicle travel (80:1 ratio).
“At Zoom our core value is Care. We care about our community, customers, company, teammates, and selves, in that order. When I think of our global community, I worry about the suffering caused today and in the future by climate change. We all must do our part to reduce our carbon footprint, and limiting unnecessary car and plane travel is a significant step,” said Eric S. Yuan, founder and CEO of Zoom. “We’re proud that our valued customers have realized such incredible CO2 emissions avoidance using Zoom and I know this is just the beginning.”
CO2 emissions avoidance was determined by the Zoom data science team, who based their calculations on the greenhouse gas emission model implemented for publicly traded UK companies in GHG reporting (gov.uk). Zoom’s methodology deviates from similar programs that overstate CO2 savings by, for example, simply aggregating pure distance calculations and multiplying them by some CO2 emissions factor.
The team analyzed Zoom meetings with video on, screen sharing used, or Zoom Room or Conference Room Connector participants. Audio-only meeting participants were excluded given their usage of Zoom could be considered a phone call replacement rather than an in-person meeting replacement. The inclusion of Zoom’s conference room solutions is due to the fact that in conference rooms groups of people are typically either sharing knowledge to make collective decisions or building rapport to kickstart or nurture a working relationship, both likely scenarios for in-person engagement.
The model assumed a “reasonable” cadence of business travel. After categorizing business trips saved based on analyzing the usage above, the Zoom team measured the distance between participants to determine mode of transportation. They assumed that a single participant would not drive to more than one location per day or fly to more than one location every two weeks.
Finally, the model also accounted for the carbon emissions of Zoom meetings. The Zoom team incremental power consumption needed to 1) use devices such as laptops, 2) send data across the internet, and 3) manufacture and dispose of all conference room hardware amortized over the estimated life of each piece of hardware. Zoom applied these categories of energy consumption with actual usage data to arrive at the total cost of Zoom Meetings and the net carbon emissions saved for each customer.
To learn more about how Zoom can improve your video meetings and collaboration while reducing your carbon emissions , sign up for a personalized 1-1 demo with a Zoom product specialist today!