How your digital detox helps the planet

By Macson Alameda

July 14, 2020

If you have been following our social media channels, you may know that the pledge for this week is to undergo a digital detox.

Social media is not particularly great for our mental health, and there is a lot of literature out there, reiterating the same fact.Multiple studies have found excessive social media usage being linked to depression, anxiety, loneliness and other mental illnesses. How does it help the environment though?

The web that connects to social media use and environment is fairly convoluted, and it is really difficult to draw a direct line that connects our digital presence to environmental damage. However, there are multiple ways by which we impact the planet, and our digital footprint, now matter how innocuous, impacts the planet.

The first of these is the data we use. Because data is ephemeral, we don’t realize that there is physical energy that enables it.Every byte of information that we share over many social media platforms requires actual, physical energy. Servers that store this data require a massive energy input.

Another way that our social media usage negatively impacts the planet is the energy utilized by the devices on which we access our social media platforms. Excessive use of these devices leads to excessive charging of said devices. Typically, a battery performs at an optimal for only the first 500 charges. Thus, by spending large amounts of time on your devices, you’re increasing the wear and tear, and causing you to replace them ever so often, which in turn leads to e-waste production.

All of us are guilty of this behavior. Completely stepping back from any digital use isn’t feasible for anyone, especially as we work from home. The alliance has its own social media pages that we often use to mobilize our audiences. Ultimately, this blog itself will be shared and promoted digitally. However, stepping back and curbing our digital footprint is an option that exists for everyone. And by doing this, we can help our mental health, & the environment around us. Its a win-win situation!