Ecotricity logotype
/Our news/2019/Top tips to be more sustainable with your tech – Ecotricity

Our news

    Browse archives
    Our news

    Top tips to be more sustainable with your tech

    Press enquiries

    If you are a journalist with a media enquiry, please contact our Press Office on 01453 761 318 or you can email

    For all other general enquiries, please call 01453 756 111 or email

    By Jess Saunders
    2 May 2019
    Top tips to be more sustainable with your tech - Image 1

    Over the last decade, we’ve become totally addicted to tech. Most of us own a smartphone or tablet, we spend more time on the internet, and we’re constantly on the hunt for the next upgrade. All that tech is having a serious impact on our digital carbon footprint – so here’s how you can be more sustainable with yours.

    Choose an ethical mobile phone

    The ethics in producing mobile phones varies widely depending on which brand you opt for. And according to Greenpeace, we’ve used as much energy in smartphone production over the last decade as it would take to power the whole of India for a year.

    The Ethical Consumer ranks mobile phones based on a number of ethical factors, including environmental impact, human rights, political donations, and animal welfare. The most ethical mobile phone on their list is Fairphone – a modular smartphone, where all the parts are replaceable and ethically sourced.

    Unfortunately, most reviews of the Fairphone say it falls short on battery life, performance, and aesthetics. But there are other well-known brands that are ethical in their production – including Blackberry, HTC and Nokia.

    Unplug your charger

    Keeping your tech plugged in when it’s already charged up will kill the battery life of your gadgets, and waste electricity. So once you’re at 100% battery, unplug your charger.

    It’s also good to get into the habit of powering down laptops and computers when you’re not using them, and setting up sleep mode to conserve battery life.

    If you regularly need to top up your battery charge on the go, consider investing in a hand crank charger like the Pocket Socket. You’ll get the peace of mind that your tech won’t run out of battery, while powering it with zero carbon energy.

    Hang on to your tech

    According to the United Nations University, 44.7 million metric tonnes of electronic waste was generated globally in 2016. Only 20% of that waste was documented to be collected and properly recycled – which means that 80% wasn’t recycled properly, or ended up in landfill.

    Get the most from your tech by getting it repaired or looking for refurbished models, instead of always opting to buy new. Switch to a SIM only provider when your contract ends – by avoiding mobile phone upgrades and being more considered with any tech purchases, you’ll create less electronic waste.

    Most small electronics, including mobile phones, can be recycled, so always try to recycle your tech where possible. You can find out what to do with your old electronics on the Recycle Now website.

    Use an eco-friendly browser

    With an estimated 2.5 billion people around the world connected to the internet, it’s no surprise that the carbon footprint of the internet is estimated to exceed that of energy.

    Switch to a more sustainable web browser, like Ecosia to cut your digital carbon footprint. They’re a search engine who use their profits to plant trees in areas across the globe that need them most. And their servers run on 100% renewable energy.

    Ecosia helps benefit the environment, along with local communities – so every time you search the internet, you know you’re doing something good.

    Choose energy efficient technology

    When you can’t avoid buying new, look for the most energy efficient appliance you can find. Buying new energy efficient tech is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint, as newer appliances often require less energy to run than older models.

    You can find out more about choosing energy efficient appliances in our 12 ways to save on your energy bills blog.

    Similar articles

    Vegan energy: why it matters

    We thought the four year anniversary of our certified vegan energy would be a good moment to take stock, to look at what vegan energy is, why it’s so important and what the future of vegan energy holds.

    Manifesto book with long shadow

    Get the book!

    Manifesto out now

    Dale Vince portrait with bandana

    Our founder Dale Vince shares his thoughts on the green revolution

    Explore the site

    Don’t just take our word for it…

    Ecotricity is recommended by
    Ethical Consumer Best Buy logo
    • Our story
    • Our mission
    • Our manifesto
    • 25 years of Ecotricity
    • Ecotricity innovation
    • Walking the talk
    • Our partners
    • Our news
    • Your green energy
    • Ecotalk + RSPB
    • Solar power export
    • Smart meters
    • Britwind
    • Carbon Footprint Calculator
    Ecotricity logotype

    Climate Clock

    The Climate Clock is a version of the Doomsday clock that has been running since 1947 - this tracks the risk of global man-made disaster, through man made technology (like nuclear weapons) - displaying the minutes and seconds left before midnight, when disaster strikes. The climate crisis is a small part of the calculations made.
    The climate clock uses a similar approach, but, focuses only on the climate crisis - which is the biggest and most urgent existential threat we face.
    "The Climate Clock is a countdown to the biggest man-made disaster we face - but also a measure by which we can track our progress - moving from fossil to renewable energy. It shows we have no time to lose - the clock is ticking…" Dale Vince, OBE.
    Ecotricity is a sponsor of the Glasgow Climate Clock that will run every night until COP26.