Working Out the Footprint of the Internet, and Moving to Greener Clouds

Chris Adams

After providing a brief background on the subject, we’ll map out the supply chain involved in delivering the world wide web to a user’s browser, from devices, to data centres, to the infrastructure that provides them.

For each step of the supply chain, we’ll run through the most effective steps you can take as a site owner, or agency building sites for clients.

For example, at web design part of the supply chain, this might include designing your pages to stay inside a performance budget, with well optimised images, and so on.

At the networking phase, we’ll explain the part content delivery networks might play to reduce the amount of bits shunted around the website, and what your options are now for this, from using a free service like cloudflare to paid CDNs from Google and Amazon running on renewables.

On the infrastructure level, we’ll cover the main front runners in this field, who they are, and what is typically involved in using them over your current ones. If you can’t switch, we’ll cover the options available to you, and look at the steps other organisations have took with similar goals, like Netflix and Mapbox, so on.

At the level above infrastructure, when running applications on servers, we’ll also briefly touch on what’s happening in that area – how new technologies make applications like WordPress and Django make more efficient use of the infrastructure they run on, and what your options are for using this yourself in your workflow.


Chris Adams is an environmentally focused tech generalist, who has spent the last 12 years working as a designer, user researcher, product manager, system administrator, and developer, for organisations ranging from the NHS, and Red Bull, to scrappy startups working in European rail travel, carbon footprinting, closed loop supply chains, city planning, and personal identity.