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
34
Captain-Planet

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

34 Comments

  1. Yes, because gaming is evil and murderers/rapists/polluters/etc is not

    Reply

  2. Hammersteyn

    January 13, 2020 at 14:19

    Marketing and PR accounts for 99.9999999% of the global warming.

    Reply

    • Admiral Chief

      January 13, 2020 at 14:26

      Marketing and PR is hot gas after all

      Reply

      • Raptor Rants

        January 13, 2020 at 14:26

        Stop projecting Admiral

        Reply

        • Admiral Chief

          January 13, 2020 at 14:49

          Reminds me of my 7 second fart at your house, good times

          Reply

  3. Raptor Rants

    January 13, 2020 at 14:26

    I’m not saying that all the online hosted servers for millions of players is going to have a large carbon footprint. But…

    Reply

    • Hammersteyn

      January 13, 2020 at 14:42

      PvP poisons the planet

      Reply

      • Raptor Rants

        January 13, 2020 at 14:42

        #SPFOREVER

        Reply

      • Pariah

        January 13, 2020 at 14:42

        I mean, gamers have been toxic online since the Internet.

        Reply

        • Raptor Rants

          January 13, 2020 at 14:49

          Gamers have been toxic since before they got internet. Garage LAN veteran here.

          Reply

          • Pariah

            January 13, 2020 at 14:49

            idk back in my day our toxicity came from spawn camping or only killing people by using a railgun or rocket launcher to knock them off the map. Though I did once “train” a friend in CS 1.6 by letting him use whatever weapon he wanted, and I kept using only a knife to kill him. For months. Was awesome. He still hates me.

          • Raptor Rants

            January 13, 2020 at 15:33

            ah CS 1.6. Good times. Good times

          • Admiral Chief

            January 13, 2020 at 14:49

            People have been toxic since, like, forever

          • Admiral Chief

            January 13, 2020 at 14:49

            I smile every time I see your comment from 7 minutes ago

          • Admiral Chief

            January 13, 2020 at 14:49

          • Hammersteyn

            January 13, 2020 at 14:57

            Yes, but to an extent.
            A. You were mostly playing with friends, so when your brains gets teleport across the map thanks to a well placed railgun shot you murmur something about lag and needing to download drivers or tweak settings.

            B. You’d never hint to the person across from you that you had sex with his mother, mostly because he’s literally across from you and he can physically hurt you.

            C. Thanks to the wonders if internet we know have mostly broken incomplete games that has content released later because they either didn’t finish on time(doubtful) or because they want to sell you the rest later. But we also can play a friendly game of COD against a 12 year old and the listen to the reincarnation of Blackbeard swear at us with a squeaky voice.

            D. Anonymity, Mr. NoScopeXxX can say what he wants without serious repurcusions. He is safe in his room with his Pikachu love pillow and box of tissues.

            E. With the advent of Battlepasses you need to do a thing to win a reward, but so are other people. It’s like the devs throw humans into the Sarlacc and then watch with glee as people trample each other to get out.

            F. PVP gaming means you share the fun with other people whereas with PVE you have all the fun. So when you keep getting spawn killed, one hits shot with a sniper or run into a hacker you become pretty toxic

            G. Um….. TLDR stay away from pvp and here’s point number 7

          • Admiral Chief

            January 13, 2020 at 15:26

            tl;dr

          • Admiral Chief

            January 13, 2020 at 15:26

            A tl;dr and seven paragraphs…Llew, that you?

          • Raptor Rants

            January 13, 2020 at 15:33

            No. It’s weird. It’s like looking in the mirror and seeing an alternative version of me

          • Admiral Chief

            January 13, 2020 at 16:01

            Except this one can eat three of you for breakfast

          • Raptor Rants

            January 13, 2020 at 15:33

            tl;dr?

            Is that how this feels? Wow. So liberating
            PS: I guess you know but I was trying to be funny. You make good points though

          • Hammersteyn

            January 13, 2020 at 16:01

            XD

    • Pariah

      January 13, 2020 at 14:42

      Well according to this (data does need to be verified, I’m too lazy right now to do so), data centres should account for about 3.2% of global emissions by 2025. Wouldn’t say that’s particularly large.

      https://www.computerworld.com/article/3431148/why-data-centres-are-the-new-frontier-in-the-fight-against-climate-change.html

      Reply

      • Raptor Rants

        January 13, 2020 at 14:49

        I want to say that figure seems low. Datacenters and just generally running the internet uses a huge amount of electricity. But I’m not an expert so I can’t really comment.

        Reply

        • Pariah

          January 13, 2020 at 14:49

          Yeah the estimate is that they’ll use about 20% of the world’s electricity by then, but then electricity only accounts for a portion of emissions globally, with oil companies causing the vast majority of it.

          Reply

          • Raptor Rants

            January 13, 2020 at 14:49

            at least we know that ZA doesn’t contribute. We don’t have enough electricity to cause issues.

          • Pariah

            January 13, 2020 at 14:49

            LOL

          • Yozzie

            January 13, 2020 at 14:57

            *Looks at mountain of broken PSU on my desk that died from load shedding*

            …okie dokie

          • Admiral Chief

            January 13, 2020 at 15:26

            Y U NO surge protect

          • HvR

            January 13, 2020 at 15:33

            guess it is batteries running out of cycles.

            People leave their PSU on, couple a months of loadshedding and those lead acid batteries have run through their few life time cycles.

  4. HvR

    January 13, 2020 at 16:30

    Some Phd students must really hard up for grant money or have really no idea what to write their thesis on.

    You do not need a detailed studies, it can be deduced that its very little compared to other high impact industries and it is an industry that is continuously improving as the main equipment used is improving.

    Think a study is needed on how studies like these are waste of resources.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Check Also

Xbox Series X Restock Update Today: Track on Twitter, Walmart, Best Buy and More

New consoles are on the horizon, and while Sony and Microsoft have spoken plenty about wha…