Berlin/Zurich, June 9, 2022 – Together with ClimatePartner, TV streaming provider Zattoo has once again calculated its carbon footprint. For the year 2021, emissions amounted to 543 tons of CO2. With this, Zattoo was able to reduce its emissions during the coronavirus pandemic by more than 20 percent compared to 2019. Zattoo completely offsets its emissions by supporting certified carbon offset projects.
Lockdowns and curfews have led to increased usage of streaming services. Also, as a result of the sharp increase in video calls and online phone calls, the amount of data exchanged over the internet reached record levels during the coronavirus pandemic. These data volumes not only require a lot of electricity, but also generate CO2 emissions. The TV streaming provider Zattoo started addressing this problem in 2019.
Since then, together with ClimatePartner, an expert for climate action within companies, Zattoo has been calculating its CO2 footprint annually in accordance with the Greenhouse Gas Protocol.* Over the past year of 2021, Zattoo's emissions amounted to 543 tons of CO2. Before the coronavirus pandemic in 2019, this figure was 692 tons of CO2. This means that Zattoo was able to reduce its emissions by more than 20 percent during the pandemic. This is mainly due to the sharp decrease in business travel, but also due to the increase in the number of people working from home, which Zattoo continued to increase during the pandemic beyond what is required by law.
Last year, the company also took additional measures to further reduce its CO2 consumption. These include providing discounted tickets for public transport, leasing work bikes and green cell phone contracts for the company's employees, as well as the planting of Zattoo's own forest in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and much more. Another important step is to reduce emissions through the manufacture and packaging of set-top boxes for the company's own B2B customers. From the second quarter of this year, the packaging for the set-top boxes will be completely plastic-free. The remote controls provided by Zattoo will also contain the highest possible proportion of recycled plastics moving forward.
In contrast, the CO2 consumption of the external data centers continued to increase in 2021. On the one hand, this is due to the calculation method, which took into account emissions last year that could not previously be accurately calculated. On the other hand, the strong increase in streaming usage has also led to a significantly higher electricity demand and thus to the generation of additional CO2 emissions. Zattoo has long relied on green electricity in the operation of its own data centers. As part of the windCORES project of wind farm operator Westfalenwind, Zattoo is the world's first TV streaming provider to use a data center directly inside a wind turbine. This not only continues to cut CO2, but the electricity generated is consumed directly where it is generated. Since its launch in 2020, this alone has enabled Zattoo to save around 60 tons of CO2.
"One of our most important goals is to one day run all servers and data centers on green electricity," said Dr. Stefan Lietsch, CTO of Zattoo. "This includes converting all external data centers, which primarily comprise those of our B2B customers, to renewable energy sources in order to further reduce our consumption. We're working closely with our customers and partners to achieve this. A few months ago, one of our largest customers converted its servers to green power, and others will follow this year."
The 543 tons of CO2 consumed in 2021 will be completely offset by certified carbon offset projects, with an added 10 percent safety margin, for a total of just under 600 tons of CO2. As part of this, Zattoo is supporting the Plastic Bank project, which collects 10 kilograms of plastic waste on beaches in Haiti, Indonesia, Brazil and the Philippines for every ton of CO2 offset. As a result, Zattoo helps to properly dispose of around 3,000 kilograms of plastic waste per year from the world's oceans. Zattoo's offsetting efforts also support communities in the Kono region of Sierra Leone in re-commissioning local water wells to supply the region with drinking water. The availability of clean drinking water eliminates the need to boil water, reducing CO2 emissions by hundreds of tons per year.
For more information on Zattoo's carbon footprint, click here.
On our website you can also find an interview with our CTO Dr. Stefan Lietsch on the topic of sustainability at Zattoo.
*All relevant greenhouse gases in accordance with the IPCC Assessment Report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change were taken into account for the calculation. These include carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxide. Each of these gases affects the earth's atmosphere differently and remains in it for different periods of time. For their impact on the greenhouse effect to be comparable, they are converted into so-called CO2 equivalents.