Industry 4.0, automation, self-driving cars, cloud-based solutions or the Internet of Things. What positive effects do these new developments have on nature and the environment? This is explained by Christian Mikolasch and Michael Schweiger from the digital consulting company BANGS. […]
The increasing pace of digitization and the comprehensive digital networking have far-reaching effects on the economy, working environments and society. Christian Mikolasch and Michael Schweiger from the digital consulting firm BANGS analyze the impact of increasing digitization on the environment. Both are specialists in sustainable digital growth concepts.
Digitization relieves the environment by reducing traffic
In the past, it was necessary for conferences that all participants had to travel miles to sit down at a table together. Thanks to digitization, this is a thing of the past and there is practically no meeting that could not also be held in the form of a video conference. The advantages of this new procedure are obvious: the fact that employees no longer have to leave their homes to get in the car results in less CO2 and also further environmental pollution is eliminated.
Another advantage is the use of digital media instead of paper. This can be observed in the email, which has largely replaced the letter from earlier. By showing a QR code at the entrance to a concert or a sporting event, the printing of an entrance ticket has become obsolete. This not only means that there is less paper waste, but due to a lower demand for paper, fewer trees have to be felled in the end.
Rethinking the mobility aspect
Due to their ability to disseminate information in real time, apps are a means of avoiding waste. For example, there are car-sharing offers that allow everyone to use a car that would otherwise just stand around unmoved. Especially for trips in large cities, it is therefore possible in many cases to dispense with your own vehicle.
The apps, which show delays on trains and transfer options, etc., have also become a pro-argument for many, but to travel by public transport. In addition, in times of digital tickets and online payment options, no one has to be afraid of not having the right change for the ticket machine in their pocket.
In addition to the widespread use of e-scooters, whose life cycle assessment is not entirely uncontroversial, there is now also the possibility to rent bicycles in almost all cities. In some metropolises, this is even possible with e-bikes or cargo bikes. The argument that you are not fit enough for cycling or that you cannot transport large objects by bike is therefore no longer attractive. Digitization makes it much easier for interested parties to find the right offer for them. The app shows at any time where the next free wheel is, which you can borrow.
Digitalization offers opportunities in the education sector
Since the obligation to be present at work is no longer considered absolutely necessary in many places, the same could also be said of the education system. Children undoubtedly also have to learn social behavior from each other and are not only at school for the sake of pure learning material. With increasing age, however, this aspect is to be neglected. Many people shy away from continuing education opportunities only because the journey is too far for them, the journey is too expensive or they fear losing time on the way. But with the many online offers, all these contra-arguments actually no longer exist.
Reduction of bureaucracy through digital processes
Since the digital data transfer is much faster than the analog way and in most cases is also much safer, bureaucracy is also reduced. The annoying filling out of forms is no longer necessary if a forgery-proof signature can also be generated by digital signature. Scanning and uploading documents is also faster, consumes fewer resources and is more cost-effective.
Digitalization benefits sustainability
Especially in the case of food, the waste of consumer societies is enormous. In addition, more and more buyers are being made aware of issues such as fair working conditions and animal welfare. Here, apps and QR codes provide the necessary information that consumers can use to understand the supply chains.
Using apps, you can find out which grocer still offers products at a greatly discounted price shortly before the store closes. This prevents actually still good food from ending up in the garbage. Similar concepts also exist in the logistics sector, where people try to make trips as efficient as possible. Someone can report a trip on a portal and if there is something to pick up on the way, it will be entered there, so that you can save yourself from having to leave two or more times. The saving of unnecessary routes thus also contributes to environmental protection and also strengthens the market position of regional suppliers.
Digitization helps in many areas of life to keep a better overview and to use this overview for the benefit of nature. Especially when it comes to saving unnecessary ways or wasting resources, everyone can achieve a lot by using the right apps.