3 Environmental Benefits of Online Education

Mitch Denton

Online learning is an incredible opportunity for millions of students across the globe. It allows for complete flexibility and control over one’s own education.

Completing courses for college and university has never been more accessible than it is right now with online courses. eLearning has increased in popularity with nearly 50% of all higher education students taking at least one online learning course full time.

With all of the benefits we have to gain from online learning, Archy Learning wishes to highlight the lesser-known benefit of online learning having a positive impact on the environment.

Here are four different ways in which online learning benefits the environment:

1) Transportation and Emissions Reduction
2) Paper Usage and Waste
3) Energy Consumption  

1) Transportation and Emissions Reduction

Today’s work environment has become increasingly remote in comparison to pre-COVID workplaces. With everyone working from home, there were definitely positive environmental impacts that went along with reducing the amount of daily transportation. On average, Americans individually use up to 600 gallons of petrol a year!

Travel takes up and wastes natural resources, so when the option of online learning or working from home presented itself the reduction in resource consumption was quite substantial as a result.

In regards to our carbon footprint, according to a study by J. Elliot Campbell from the University of California and David E. Campbell From Humboldt State University, for every 100 students that transferred their schooling over to online learning, CO2 emissions were cut down by as much as 5-10 tons.

Further, online learning reduces up to 90% of CO2 emissions. A student typically emits about 180 pounds of C02 emissions daily with face-to-face classes, compared to only four pounds of C02 emitted from online students. A huge difference individually as well as collectively.

2) Paper Usage and Waste

There was a study recently published by the National Wildlife Foundation that found that 60% of school waste is paper, with one ton of paper waste being equal to 16 large trees.

To put it simply, traditional schooling uses a lot of forms of temporary paper products that are discarded at alarming rates. With eLearning, all of the online classes, course information, and even online textbooks help drastically reduce the amount of paper required for studies, and in doing so save millions of trees every year.

Reducing resource access to simply requiring an email and website login also greatly helps save money for the educational institutions themselves.

3) Energy Consumption

With eLearning, there is no need to run up energy bills for lighting, heating, and cooling large educational buildings. Studies have shown that online students use up to 90% less energy in comparison to classroom education.

All of these environmental savings, also help to reduce costs for schools, as online learning removes the need to pay for expenses that come with school grounds.

Online learning is not only a more convenient option for students with a save my name email, allowing for learning to take place anywhere there is a WIFI connection, but also has an incredibly positive impact on the environment, reducing carbon offsets and usage of natural resources. You can start by creating your own online course for free today, using Archy Learning.

Mitch Denton

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