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Archive for March 5th, 2009

We have often considered whether the ecommerce model is more earth friendly than brick and mortar.  For some things like those you could pick up at the local grocery store, e-commerce probably wastes more resources in transportation.  But for more unique items like those Baying Hound carries, we have always figured the average person would travel far enough that buying online wastes fewer resources than buying from a brick and mortar store.

Now Carnegie Mellon has done a study to evaluate this idea.  “In a study of this nature with numerous variables, we took great care to estimate average case performance using simulations and approximations,” said H. Scott Matthews, associate professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University and research director of the Green Design Institute. “We were able to show that in the majority of cases studied, the Buy.com e-commerce model does perform better than shopping at traditional retail in the areas of carbon dioxide emissions and energy consumption.”

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