The term, which sounds like what the transporters do in Star Trek, is one of the great benefits of the Internet. Instead of CDs, folks have turned to iTunes and Spotify. Rather than heft around a tome or two, they head to Amazon and order e-books for their Kindles.
The data centers that serve up that digital media, the networks that deliver it and the devices used to consume it use far less energy than the manufacture and transport of its physical counterparts. The same, it turns out, is true for DVDs.
So should we all toss our DVD players? According to the study’s authors, if every DVD-watching person in 2011 streamed the same videos instead, that would have saved roughly 2 billion kilograms of carbon dioxide emissions and about 30 petajoules of energy—enough to support 200,000 American households for one year.
Streaming on your Xbox One or PlayStation 4? Well, here’s another story you may want to have a look at.