Environment

The problem is not this specific website or how fast it loads, but that shipping seems to be so much more important than performance, usability, accessibility, or user experience.

One aspect that is not mentioned in this blog post is the enormous impact of bloat (543 KB minus what is really needed to present a text with a nice style, so probably 500 KB) on the environment. News pages, for example, are often bloated with lots and lots of JavaScript libraries and gigantic stylesheets. Imagine how much energy is needed to transmit and process these megabytes, gigabytes or terabytes. All the Co2 that is emitted unnecessarily. Maybe also read this related article.

Danny Van Kooten wrote an great article. He wrote how he tries to reduce the environmental impact of his WordPress plugins:

Just last week I reduced global emissions by an estimated 340.000 kg per month by removing a 20 kB JavaScript dependency in Mailchimp for WordPress. There’s no way I can have that kind of effect in other areas of my life.

But he also gives tips on how everyone with a website can decrease the impact of the own website:

Your content site probably doesn’t need JavaScript. You probably don’t need a CSS framework. You probably don’t need a custom font. Use responsive images. Extend your HTTP cache lifetimes. Use a static site generator or wp2static.com instead of dynamically generating each page on the fly, despite never changing. Consider ditching that third-party analytics service that you never look at anyway, especially if they also happen to sell ads. Run your website through websitecarbon.com. Choose a green web host.

Climate change is reaching the media more and more, every day we hear more stories about the bad things caused by climate change and also the youth protests “Fridays for Future” are very popular (at least here in Germany and Europe). That is one side to it. On the other hand, I read on Twitter almost every day about conferences and developers all over the world who fly there just to listen to some presentations or give some themselves.
Jan-Lukas Else
20 years old student who writes about everything he cares about.