Episode 6: Digging deeper

Answering listener questions

In this podcast episode, hosts Rawan, Julie, and producer Bart are doing things a little differently: no interview this week but instead dive into our inbox and answer questions from listeners. Listen to dig deeper on previously discussed topics!

Get involved!

Contact the team and we’ll cover your questions in another episode. Send your feedback and thoughts to podcast@sharingperspectivesfoundation.com 

In this episode

One of the questions asked about Bart’s answer in the first episode about the calacution for CO2 emission of the online exchange at the Sharing Perspectives Foundation. Hold on, because here you have the answer in full text:

“According to an article in the Guardian in 2019 the CO2 emissions for a return flight from Rome to Londen is 234kg per person. Now if, for a course like the one Sophie and Sophia organised this is the average distance people would have to travel, and the course consists of a 1000 people, that would mean 234000 kg of CO2 emissions. And just to be clear, this is only the emissions from fuel consumption, it doesn’t take into account things like the construction of the plane.
Now we of course can’t just assume that these emissions are gone. People do have to use their computers to log in to a virtual exchange. So the next bit is going to contain some assumptions, but overal it should give us a decent estimate of the CO2 footprint of a course like the one Sophie and Sophia set up. So first, I’m just assuming everyone uses laptops, because that makes it easier. A laptop uses around 50 to a 100 Watts per hour, so let’s go with the higher estimate. If the course is 10 meetings of 2 hours, for a 1000 people, that comes to 2000 kWhm which emits around 566 Kg of CO2, if we take the UK grid as the standard. What are the CO2 emissions of video streaming? So, an hour of video calling at standard definition uses around 270 Mb. Using the 10 meetings for 2 hours and a 1000 people from before we get to 5400 GB used in total for the video conferencing for their course.
According to a 2017 paper called “Electricity Intensity of Internet DataTransmission”, the electricity use for data transmission over the internet is around 0.06 KWh/GB. So the video conferencing adds an extra 324 KWh. So this adds another 92 KG of CO2. This gives us a total of 658 Kg’s of CO2 for their course. Now none of these numbers are exact, but they do illustrate that a course like this clearly emits less then if we were to fly everyone in and have physical exchanges, but it’s certainly not nothing. A single tree can absorb around 10Kg of CO2 per year, so in order to absorb the CO2 of this course Sophie and Sophia would have to plant 66 trees. “

Papers mentioned in this episode:

  • papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?a…stract_id=3544669
    This is a paper aper by Rameli, Ossola, and Rancan disseminated through SSRN found that the success of the 2019 climate strikes impacted the stock prices of high carbon firms across Europe. The paper finds that the strikes likely impacted investors’ assessment of where environmental policy might be heading, and that the strikes affected the stock prices of firms with high carbon footprint in a significant negative way.
  • www.mdpi.com/2071-1050/12/10/4127/htm
    A paper by Han and Ahn published in the journal Sustainability found that while the movement had been effective in problematizing global climate inaction and inertia and in framing climate change from a justice perspective, it had not been effective in converting their moral legitimacy into the power required for sweeping changes.
  • www.researchgate.net/profile/Viktor…lity-to-Safegu
    This is the paper that argues that the climate actions of 2019 are setting the new norm for international policy change to take place.
  • www.jstor.org/stable/2601361
    And this is the Finnemore and Sikkink paper mentioned on which they base their framework of norm-setting.