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Market News

 August 27, 2009
Download and Save the Planet!

 GLOBE-Net - When people hear the word Microsoft the normal reaction is to associate it with Windows, Bill Gates, Computers or the vaunted Blue Screen of Death.  No where would you expect Microsoft to be associated with environmental issues. 

A study commissioned by Microsoft and Intel centers on the distribution of music now and in the future.  The study was done by members of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Stanford University.  They assess the energy and CO2 emissions created by just one music album via the conventional way of purchasing it at a retail establishment and that of an e-commerce sale of an album versus that of a digital download service.

They conclude that even in the worst case scenario that a digital download produces on average 65% lower emissions than the best case e-commerce delivery method.

These results are important because with the entire recent furor over the energy that the internet uses, this proves that the World Wide Web can be used as a source of dematerialization.  To be clear, this report does not endorse illegal downloading and neither am I.  There are many legal vendors out there to purchase your digital music from.

What needs to happen next is for the companies that can take advantage of this as their sole distribution method to act on it.  By doing so they would save money and the savings could then be passed on to their end customers. 

Can you imagine a world where if you want to purchase a song or movie you just need to download it?

Would you, if you could, download your purchases to save the planet?

By John Gough,