Advertiser’s Carbon Footprint equivalent to 380,000,000 cars!

According to our calculations marketing communication globally is responsible for over 500 million tonnes of CO2-e per year and is forecast to grow by over 5 percent every year thereafter.

To get this into some prospective, this is the equivalent amount CO2-e generated in the same period by over 380,000,000 average fuel-efficient cars. This is more than half the total number of cars on the road today!

This figure is made up of $450 billion in media spend which equals approximately 162 million tonnes CO2-e a year plus the commercial print, direct marketing, design and production related activities; making up the balance.

Carbon should be used as another measure when advertisers plan their media. This will not only reduce the advertisers’ emissions it will also send a message to the media channels and marketing suppliers to improve their footprint.

And no, just shifting to on-line is not the simple answer.

The internet, although very cost effective when using traditional media buying measures, has a big carbon footprint when not used in a targeted manner. That needs to be understood before leaping to the on-line solution.

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About Chris Sewell

Christopher Sewell is a TrinityP3 Business Director specializing in helping companies understand the environmental impact of their marketing spend. He is also the CEO of The Gaia Partnership who is building an on-line application ‘CO2counter’ to measure carbon emissions in all forms of marketing communications. Read his full bio here
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