How to do climate neutral software development

Nowadays, many software development companies are adopting climate neutrality in software development, understanding the importance of mitigating the adverse effects of software on the climate. In an effort to combat excessive energy use and carbon emissions, the tech industry as a whole is constantly working to adopt green code practises.

Software development can be made climate neutral by implementing energy-efficient practices, using renewable energy sources, encouraging remote work, etc. There are some companies that are successfully battling to be climate neutral including Google, Netflix, Microsoft, etc. In this article, you will learn the various strategies they follow in detail.

  • Implement energy efficient practises
  • Promote working from home
  • Manage supply chain sustainability 
  • Make a carbon-neutral plan and put it into action
  • Raise awareness among the customers and stakeholders

1. Implement energy efficient practises

Software companies do it by implementing energy efficient practices. It includes optimising the codes, using energy efficient hardwares, switching to renewable energy sources, etc. By making the codes more efficient, the software will only require fewer resources to function, which lessens the load on processors and lowers energy consumption. It means you can achieve considerable energy savings.

  • Another practice is to optimise hardware usage by opting for virtualization or containerization. 
  • If the hardware you use for software development is energy efficient, it can greatly decrease carbon emissions. 
  • It means you can lower the number of servers needed, resulting in smaller energy consumption.
  • And finally, try to switch to renewable energy sources, which means purchasing green energy from utilities or installing solar panels on company premises. 
  • By doing that, software companies can become climate neutral, lowering their carbon footprint and contributing to a more sustainable future.

2. Promote working from home

Software companies, especially after the pandemic, are encouraging their employees to work remotely. The advantages of encouraging remote work include the fact that it is a great way to reduce carbon emissions from commuting, which significantly contributes to global carbon emissions. So, in order to maintain climate neutrality in software development, many firms make use of communication and collaboration tools to enable remote work and reduce the carbon footprint of their employees.

3. Manage supply chain sustainability 

Practice sustainability in supply chain management processes. Choose vendors and suppliers who can provide environmentally friendly products to your company that are in line with your sustainability goals. Implement a sustainability reporting system to track progress and ensure that the company is meeting its carbon reduction goals. Promote sustainability initiatives among employees and customers to create a culture of sustainability.

4. Make a carbon-neutral plan and put it into action

Carrying out a carbon neutral plan to hit the carbon reduction targets is another way to do climate neutral software development. Such a plan will help the companies assess their carbon footprint and take the necessary actions to reduce emissions. Several benchmarks and measurable targets have been set in order to monitor progress in the company’s commitment to reducing its carbon footprint. 

Companies must also measure their emissions and report them to stakeholders. They must also set long-term goals and create strategies to achieve those goals. Finally, they must evaluate their carbon footprint regularly and adjust their strategies accordingly. This will allow them to remain competitive and reduce their impact on the environment. Additionally, it will help them maintain their reputation as an ethical and responsible business.

5. Raise awareness among the customers and stakeholders

Employing sustainable practices and becoming a climate neutral software development company is not possible only with employees. The company should raise awareness about environmental issues and the importance of mitigating them by engaging with customers and stakeholders. The company can do this by providing educational resources regarding how to reduce carbon emissions or by highlighting its sustainability initiatives to promote environmental conservation in order to promote environmental stewardship within the organisation.

So, these are the few things you can do to make the software development process climate neutral. What you should understand is that it is not an easy task as it requires a lot of effort both from the firms as well as from the customers and stakeholders. The software industry has the power to make it happen through thoughtful planning, significant resource allocation, and a significant mental shift. Take prompt action in this regard so that you can establish a high bar for other industries to meet.

Interesting Links:

Guide to reducing your software’s carbon footprint

How climate neutral is your Software?

Pictures: Canva

The author: Sascha Thattil works at which is a part of the YUHIRO Group. YUHIRO is a German-Indian enterprise which provides programmers to IT companies, agencies and IT department.

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