Home Gaming Just how much do game development studios contribute to global warming? One university plans to find out

Just how much do game development studios contribute to global warming? One university plans to find out

2 min read

Like most people on the planet, I may just be the most patient supervillain to ever emerge in recent history, thanks to the unstoppable power of my carbon footprint that is currently adding to the mutually assured destruction plan. I’ve got a scooter that pumps out 110 CCs of pure evil exhaust fumes, I don’t recycle because no bottle alive with a friendly environmental message is going to tell me what to do. And I just kicked a duck for encouraging wind power.

One other part of my life that is probably doing its part to turn this planet into a searing ball of ash and misery? Probably my game consoles. With three of them set up and running in standby whenever Eskom isn’t playing chicken with getting government to approve performance bonuses for management, I’m probably hastening the destruction of Earth ahead of schedule.

How much do modern-day gaming developers contribute to the damage of the environment and global warming though, what with their crunch cycles and years-long development of your favourite games? That’s a question the University of Technology in Sydney is looking to answer this week with a survey aimed at assessing the environmental impact of the industry.

According to Games Industry Biz, the survey led by Dr Ben Abraham of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences will seek to “”create a snapshot of the energy intensity” of modern day studios, with the end result being an initiative to hopefully persuade developers to cut down on emissions and help save the planet in the long run.

The goal of this survey and research project is to create a snapshot of the energy intensity of contemporary videogame development in the workplace where games are actually made, and to do this by obtaining data first–hand from game development studios and their employees about their energy use and carbon emissions policies and practices.

The research also aims to get a sense of the attitudes of game developers towards the potential environmental impacts of their work, and the level of interest and concern around the issue of climate change and carbon emissions resulting from game development activity.

It’ll be the first of its kind, as no official record of the level of emissions released by game studios currently exist. Once the survey is over, all the data will be added to a research project called Digital Games After Climate Change.

Last Updated: January 13, 2020

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