Global warming is a major cause of concern for everyone because climate change is affecting every country in the world. It is a high time that we start caring for our environment for a better and longer life ahead. Many industries across the globe are taking green initiatives to make their businesses more environment friendly and video conferencing is no different. Video conferencing is already a cost cutting solution for many organizations but in a way it also holds importance for a cleaner environment.
Video conferencing is all about connecting people, conducting meetings and communicate internally or externally. Before video conferencing, managers from all over the country or globe used to fly or drive to an important meeting such as an AGM. As a result, it created more carbon emissions, used more fuel, created more pollution through smoke and so on. With the help of video conferencing all these things have been reduced by more than 50%. Every member of the meeting can join and contribute via internet instead of being in the very same room.
Cost reduction will drive implementation
Forecasts suggest that by 2020 US companies can reduce CO2 emissions by 4.6 million metric tons which is equivalent to 875,000 less passenger cars on the road.
Organizations saved thousands of dollars and eventually the effects on environment lower downed as well. And it did not end there, thanks to technology we have more efficient and more environment friendly products. Systems generate less heat and consume less power compared to 5 years ago and manufacturers are working on improving these numbers each year.
Speaking of manufacturers, they are making their factories more environment friendly by deploying solar power for clean efficient energy and more effectiveness at lower productivity hours. These manufacturers are becoming the part of EPEAT which is a comprehensive global environment rating system that help buyers identify greener computers and other electronics.
Another thing which contributes to greener world is longevity of the products. If a product lasts for a decade then it will produce less waste compared to a product that lasts 5 years. This ultimately results in greener earth since some components on computer systems are just not recyclable.
Recycling is another major part of improving efficiency and helping the environment. Instead of just disposing off old electronic items it is better to properly recycle them. There are specialist organizations that recycle computer components and other electronic products which can be used to make future products.
Talking about statistics then businesses who implement video conferencing can cut CO2 emissions by 5.5 million metric tons in total and save close to $19 billion. If a business with $1 billion in revenue each year makes just four virtual meeting rooms then it can get its return on investment in less than 15 months and save 900 business trips in a year. These are astonishing statistics and the change that video conferencing brings to the environment.
In a business environment it's all about making sense in business terms. CO2 emissions do not mean much to them but $19 billion is what attracts them and it does not end here. Businesses with green initiatives get grants and subsidies from the government. So they can save even more money in taxes than before. It's a win-win situation for both the environment and the business.
Video conferencing does not requires a high investment and it can be setup quickly plus the ROI is amazing. VTC also increases productivity as well as work-life balance with less travelling. In terms decision making, businesses can make decisions 10 times faster through video conferencing then traditional meetups. The benefits for video conferencing is for everyone be it small, medium or large enterprises. Each business can setup their own meeting spaces according to their need and budget. They will save costs and help the environment.
Another advantage of VTC is work on-the-go or remotely which means employees can work from home and again reduce CO2 emissions by burning less fuel in their cars. Although it might not be an ideal solution for every organization but it is for some.
Forecasts suggest that by 2020 US companies can reduce CO2 emissions by 4.6 million metric tons which is equivalent to 875,000 less passenger cars on the road. This is all because of video conferencing and a reduction of 66% in traveling for an organization. It will yield economy wide financial benefits and return on investment is less than 2 years.
Technology is making products smarter and greener so these numbers are most likely to increase with time. Smarter products, more recycling, longevity of products, greener offices and VTC all contribute to a healthy earth.
Since the solutions to become effective and productive are slowly vanishing, VTC is another way to get a competitive advantage. Businesses can offer excellent customer support through VTC as we saw in Amazon Mayday, faster decisions and product development. 3D-printers can help employees print a product prototype by just sharing the designs over the internet. This will save shipping costs and reduce CO2 footprint by not physically shipping the product.
Video conferencing has indeed helped the environment and it will continue to do so for many years to come. The question will be how much and how quickly can we implement travel reducing technologies. The answer will come from actual cost saving metrics faster than companies who are willing open to helping the environment.