|Name||Space Ape Games|
|Products||Mobile video games|
|Greenlights||200% CO2 offset|
Annual reduced company emission by 10%
|Notable Achievement||Offset 1,700 tonnes of CO2 annually|
When you think about green gaming, our minds often go to large corporations, huge factories, and tons of plastic. What we don’t think about is the small rectangle in all our pockets and how mobile gaming fits in the picture.
However, a collection of mobile gaming companies are taking on that very challenge and one at the forefront of the movement is Space Ape Games. For many organizations that challenge of “going green” is a daunting task. Space Ape Games created a process allowing them to not only quickly make the necessary changes and become carbon neutral in September 2019 but also to offset 200% of the carbon created.
Defined and measured
The two steps were to define and then measure what the organization’s carbon footprint actually was. The data came from a variety of sources. Some information required reaching out to managers and suppliers for numbers while other calculations, such as hotel stays, required finding the emissions factor for the country of the stay and calculating based on the number of nights stayed.
One point of pride for Space Ape Games is that they’ve not only offset their own carbon cost but also the cost of playing their games. Using internal analytics data that detailed the number of hours played by each player in each country they were able to calculate that 180 tonnes of CO2 were created by customers annually. Once totaled, in order to reach their goal of a 200% offset, Space Ape Games would have to offset 1,700 tonnes a year.
Where to go from here?
Having the ability and desire to make positive changes can mean nothing if you don’t have a sense of direction with your resources. For Space Ape Games, the challenge was to find high quality carbon offsets that would deliver tangible and measurable changes.
There are plenty of organizations that offer bold claims but aren’t able to provide the science or strategy to prove their efforts while others are simply scams. In order to find credible sources, Space Ape Games used the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) and the Gold Standard when reviewing potential options. While doing so, they realized the cost would range from $5-20/tonne to offset. Both organizations published the data necessary to verify that the work was being done.
It was during this time that Space Ape Games chose to hone in on and fund projects that help communities who are most directly affected by climate change. The carbon offsetting with projects offered secondary benefits to the communities.
An example of this was an initiative in Cambodia that Space Ape Games supported in 2018. The goal was to provide clean water filters to communities in need so that they wouldn’t need to boil unpurified water. By not needing to boil water on wood fire stoves this can avoid smoke created which can lead to respiratory illness and allow forests in the area to be preserved, all while offsetting 1000 Tonnes of CO2.
Another project in the Democratic Republic of Congo focused on the conservation of the Isangi Forest through conservation efforts which offset 700 tonnes while also improving local food security.
Changes at home
Not content to simply throw money at a problem, Space Ape Games looked for ways to save at home. The aim to reduce emissions by 10% was a real goal that required some lifestyle adaptations. The company committed to reduce their annual flight totals by 300,000 kms per year. Replaced instead with conference calls or clustered travel to be more efficient.
They discovered ways to improve efficiencies in cloud usage to save 1-2% annually and also changed their energy suppliers to renewables while adjusting office cooling/heating. Employees were educated on the importance of recycling, office grocery products were switched to those with more recyclable packaging and staff were offered reusable coffee cups. They also took part in a UK-wide event called Green Student Game Jam to spread awareness.
Ultimately, Space Ape Games has shown that companies of any size can truly have a big impact and that change can come from unlikely places. From small changes to giant initiatives, they have made a commitment to green games that will provide huge impacts for years to come.
Want to check out some of their games? Here a few links to explore to get started: