Green Gaming

Green Gaming


Many people are enthusiastic about video games - but they don't immediately think about the environmental impact. But before, during and even after gaming, a lot of energy is consumed, even more when playing live sports betting.

Gaming has long since become more than just a leisure activity for children and "nerds." According to the industry association Game, six out of ten Germans of all ages and genders now like to immerse themselves in virtual game worlds at least sometimes. Especially in the corona year 2020, many have (re)discovered the fun of games for themselves. But what most people probably don't think about is that gaming on PCs and game consoles also releases CO2 - in some cases quite a lot.


Exactly how much depends on a variety of factors, such as the type of console and how long you spend gaming. It is therefore difficult to find reliable figures - not least because scientists have not yet done much research on the subject.

However, manufacturers like Sony provide estimates of how much CO2 is emitted during an hour of gaming on the Playstation 4, for example. With a conventional game from the store, you'd emit around 0.055 kg of carbon dioxide - about the same as blow-drying your hair for three and a half minutes.

In principle, this is more climate-friendly than playing a game in the cloud. According to Sony, 0.149 kilograms of CO2 are emitted per hour (as of 2020). However, these CO2 emissions do not include the costs for the production of the game shell and the fact that the amount of CO2 emitted in cloud gaming strongly depends on how long you play and which console model you use.

Regarding the console model, the online magazine Watson made a calculation almost two years ago: According to the manufacturer, the different PS4 models consume an average of 0.119 kilowatts per hour. Based on the energy balance of the Federal Environment Agency published in 2019, one hour on the Playstation 4 in this country leads to about 47.71 grams of carbon dioxide. Compared to a car trip, this means that three hours of gaming equals about one kilometer of driving. The calculation basis for driving a car is provided by the Federal Statistical Office, according to which a passenger car emits about 147 grams of CO2 per kilometre travelled per person (as of 2018).


The calculations sound too complicated for you? One thing is certain: gaming has a negative impact on the environment due to the CO2 emissions caused by the game itself, but also by the production of the game consoles and games. With these eight tips, you can easily make gaming more sustainable.


Tip 1: Buy and sell used games - or borrow them
Does it always have to be the latest version of your favourite game series? You can now find used PC and console games in many stores or online at used portals.

If you want to sell games or devices, re-commerce companies like "Konsolenkost" could be the right place for you. They make sure that your discarded games and consoles can live a longer life - because recycling electronics is often time-consuming, consumes energy just like manufacturing, and can be harmful to people and the environment if not done properly.

Instead of buying current games at a high new price, you can simply borrow them from providers such as the "Verleihshop" online or alternatively from libraries or media libraries.

Tip 2: Buy the right console and hardware
Before you buy, decide whether you really need a high-end gaming PC. If you only play small games with low graphics resolution from time to time, a laptop might be enough. You can find used gaming consoles at Rebuy, for example, and used laptops at Backmarket.

But if you really want to buy the latest PC model, you can also save electricity by selecting the right hardware. As US researcher Evan Mills from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory told Enercity's Energy Magazine, the graphics card is the biggest single energy guzzler in the device. Nowadays, high-performance graphics cards with lower power consumption are already available in the mid-range.

Tip 3: Save energy with software
Dinner is calling and you leave your game running in pause mode? That also increases the power consumption. Therefore, it's best to check whether your game can automatically cache and go into sleep mode before you buy it.

Tip 4: Clean your devices regularly
Sounds trivial, but keeping your consoles in good shape increases their longevity, saves resources and gives you more fun for longer.