Is e-learning environmentally friendly? [Infographic]

Is e-learning environmentally friendly? [Infographic]

Posted on Jun 23, 2015

Is e-learning green-learning?


Let’s think about this for a minute. If you aren’t using online training, then how are you delivering it?

If it’s not e-learning then there aren’t a great many options really. There’s face-to-face training of some sort or traditional distance learning.

Classroom or face-to-face training, usually means either getting a trainer to come to you, or sending your people off to a training venue, and for many organisations, it will be both. Cue planes, trains and automobiles.

Consider for a moment the energy consumption that occurs whenever people travel between offices or to and from training facilities and venues.

That’s more fuel and CO2 emissions. Not to mention electricity and/or gas to heat (or cool) the venue, run those lengthy Powerpoints on the big screen, and provide you with a stream of refreshments throughout the day and that all-important buffet lunch.


Then of course there’s all the paper.

Ever been to a training event that didn’t have a flipchart, a supply of paper and a wad of handouts? Me neither. Oh, and the mandatory feedback form. The paper industry is the largest consumer of energy and uses more water to produce a ton of product than any other industry. It's also the third largest industrial polluter to air, water and land, and paper accounts for a staggering 40% of all waste. Goodbye trees, hello landfill.

It’s true that distance learning saves on the travel, but if you’ve ever done any, you’ll know that there’s a fair whack of paper involved, and a lot of to-ing and fro-ing as papers are posted out, written work submitted, more papers sent out, more work submitted and so on. Royal Mail do well out of it, the environment, not so much.


The beauty of e-learning is that it comes to you – wherever you are, whenever you want.

No fuel, no travel and not a jot of stationery involved. With the flick App, you don’t even need to be connected to the internet to do your training.

‘But surely all those laptops and mobiles are using up quite a bit of energy?’ I hear you say? Well yes, typically PCs and laptops burn about 0.125 ksh per hour, but chances are, especially if you’re at work, you’d probably have them on anyway.


Still unconvinced?

A recent study by the Open University claims that on average, e-learning produces 85% fewer CO2 emissions than standard face-to-face or distance learning. So, I’d say, yes, e-learning is very much green learning.

Click here to see why e-learning is not only eco-friendly, but also how your organisation will benefit from it [infographic].




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