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Ten tips on using the internet for sustainability

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Under Creative Commons License: Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives

Every day more accessible, the internet is already a vital part of the routine in big cities. But beyond the news sites, online games and social networks, this tool of the modern world can be a great ally of sustainability. Thinking about it, the Portal listed ten simple tips on how to use the Internet for sustainable development.

Shop supermarket


Many supermarket chains already have internet shopping services. If yours already has it, use it. In addition to insurance, the service saves fuel (since delivery is usually synchronized and done at once, by a single vehicle), time, money and stress.

Just avoid ordering products with overnight delivery, as this usually consumes a lot of energy. Also try placing orders along with relatives, friends and neighbors. This will avoid further expenses with unnecessary travel and travel.

Pay your bills


The internet is able to shorten distances and speed up the life of the busiest, so enjoy! Make financial transactions online and save fuel, paper (from receipts, tickets and vouchers) and reduce the volume of waste.

Many banks already offer online services. The client can make appointments, transfers, payments and other financial transactions without leaving home. The receipts and vouchers are digital and have the same legal values as the printed ones, so you only have to print them if you need them.

By leaving the car at home and avoiding printing the documents, you will be avoiding throwing tons of gaseous pollutants into the atmosphere and keep millions of trees standing. Finally, these transactions are safer, and the client does not have to go to a bank and leave with large amounts – attracting thieves and the famous “bank statements.”

Hold meetings

Andrew Scott

Whenever you can, count on the technology at your disposal, such as the fax, the phone and the internet, and solve your work problems without leaving the place. An email can often replace a motoboy and a hands-free phone call can replace a live meeting.

Nowadays many companies have already adopted teleconferences and online meetings in different parts of the world. Through these services, companies can hold meetings, client meetings, trainings, demonstrations and workshops over the phone or over the internet, rather than in person. This reduces the costs of the company and avoids the displacement of the participants, either by air or by land.


Alec Couros

The racing routine and daily worries end up being a hassle in helping. That is why a new modality of volunteering gains more and more space in Brazil are the Volunteers Online . By adapting the contribution of people interested in helping social actions, practice has the Internet as the main mobilization tool.

The initiative, which emerged in the United States and soon gained adherents in Canada and Europe, proposes a solidarity marriage between availability, area of interest and social actions. Volunteers online or volunteers without leaving home have activities offered by different organizations that fit perfectly into your day to day. So, look for organizations such as the Online Volunteering or Online Volunteers and how to participate.

Use online tour guides

Wessex Archeology

Next time you’re traveling, try switching the printed guide online. Some technological tools, such as cell phones and GPS, can help you break out the best tourist destinations without having to spend paper or printer ink. Even if you need to print a few sheets, you will certainly use a much smaller amount of paper than if you bought a complete guide, since there are information on various locations, many of which you will not go anywhere near.

In the online guides it is possible to obtain all type of information about the place to be visited, such as tips, lodging, itineraries, history and even weather forecast. On the internet you can find hundreds of websites on the most diverse places with complete and diverse content, just look.

Read eBooks

Veronica Belmont

A good way to help save paper, save thousands of trees and prevent old books from ending up in the trash is to read e-books. They are scanned books that can be viewed or downloaded on your computer. The content is the same as the traditional book, the only difference is that it does not affect the environment so much.

If your computer screen bothers you while reading, adjust the lighting to make it more comfortable. Today it is possible to find numerous works of the most varied themes with free download on the internet. You can even set up or encourage the creation of a virtual library at your work, school or college.

Buy music


Hundreds of artists and record labels offer complete albums on the internet. So, find out if your favorite singer or band is already part of this group and buy the songs online. In addition to being faster and more practical, this avoids all costs of producing, distributing and discarding CDs, covers, inserts, etc.

The process is quite simple, like a common internet purchase. You can still choose to buy the entire album or just the favorite songs. And nothing to download songs irregularly, remember that piracy is a crime.

Prefer digital phone books

Daniela Cristina

Every year, telephone companies send our traditional telephone directories to our homes. Multiply those hundreds of pages across all the units produced and you’ll get the sense of how much paper is spent to make a product that we do not even use more often.

Then, if possible, prefer digital phone books. This is a much more sustainable option. The same services are offered over the phone or the internet – and without having to knock down any trees for that. In addition to paper, the lists use inks and emit pollutants during manufacturing and transportation.

Avoid Spams


Do you know those unwanted e-mails, more commonly known as spam, often devoid of any usefulness, and that overwhelm your e-mail inbox? In addition to boring, these emails still harm the environment. A survey by a software company has found that the circulation of these messages consumes about 33 billion kilowatt hours per year, enough to supply 2.4 million homes with electricity in the same period.

So never send this kind of message to your contacts and always use an antispam service, which filters the unwanted e-mails and can save up to 135 billion kilowatt hours per year – which would have the same environmental impact of withdrawing 13 million street cars annually.

Contribute to campaigns and virtual mobilizations


The virtual activism has left the level of ideas and today is a structured model of mobilization capable of great things. Sites, blogs and social networks such as Facebook, YouTube, Flickr and Twitter are already considered tools capable of mobilizing thousands of people around the world – whether to pass laws such as the Clean Sheet, or to organize community residents to clean the streets , As happened in London after a series of demonstrations and riots in neighborhoods of the British capital.

Therefore, inform yourself about movements that are raising support for actions in defense of the environment or for a fairer society and participate! Sign the petitions, spread the word on social networks and support the movements.