ufa777 enthusiasts aren’t the only ones who need to be concerned about the environmental impact of online gaming. The $184 billion gaming industry consumes a lot of energy and produces a fair amount of emissions. By conservative estimates, it creates about the same level of carbon dioxide as the global film industry or the European country of Slovenia.

Many gamers have taken steps to reduce their impact, including purchasing games on digital download instead of physical discs and recycling their old consoles and computer hardware. But there’s much more to address. The electricity used to power gaming devices and data centers around the world that keep games running 24/7 produce significant amounts of emissions. Manufacturing consoles and computer hardware also requires a lot of energy, as do the extraction of resources like copper and aluminum that are used in their production.

The Environmental Impact of Online Gaming

At GDC 2023, Patrick Prax spoke about the challenges he faces with his team at game studio Space Ape to make a more environmentally sustainable game. He argued that focusing on educating players about the need to lower their carbon footprint won’t work without changing internal practices within the gaming industry. This could come either through voluntary agreements between companies or via legislation that would force change on the entire sector.

The good news is that a lot of gaming’s biggest companies have already agreed to sustainability targets. Of the 33 largest gaming companies cited in an analysis by Ben Abraham for Project Drawdown, 10 of them have committed to net-zero emissions before 2030.

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