Sony is joining other leaders in the gaming industry as part of the Playing for the Planet Alliance, a group committed to making strides towards long term sustainability goals at the United Nations Climate Summit. Sony has already made strides in reducing the power consumption of the PlayStation 4 with “efficient technologies” that have reduced the carbon footprint of PlayStation users significantly.
For context, we estimate the carbon emissions we have avoided to date already amount to almost 16 million metric tons, increasing to 29 million metric tons over the course of the next 10 years (which equals the CO2 emissions for the nation of Denmark in 2017).
As part of these commitments, Sony is investing in research and technology that will reduce the power consumption of the “next generation PlayStation console” (Sony still hasn’t announced the official name) while in Rest Mode, estimated to be around 0.5 W.
I am also very pleased to announce the next generation PlayStation console will include the possibility to suspend gameplay with much lower power consumption than PS4 (which we estimate can be achieved at around 0.5 W). If just one million users enable this feature, it would save equivalent to the average electricity use of 1,000 US homes.
For reference, the PS4 currently consumes about 10 W in Rest Mode, so the PS5’s reduction would drop power consumption by an estimated 95%. Broad analysis of PS4 Rest Mode says that it costs about $10 a year in electricity just to leave it in a suspended state when you aren’t playing it. The reported consumption rate of the PS5 should reduce that to around 50 cents a year (inflation and local rate differences notwithstanding. All numbers are broad estimates intended for demonstration purposes only). Sure, saving 9 bucks a year isn’t going to redefine your finances, but for the number of consoles that enter homes and the growing popularity of gaming, it helps next-generation consoles have much less of an overall climate impact.
In addition, Sony is assessing its overall carbon footprint of ongoing gaming services and report openly on the the efficiency measures they are putting in place to reach sustainability goals. The company, in partnership with the Playing for the Planet Alliance, also wants to use games for good and social change, raising awareness about climate issues and other sustainability topics.
There is an undeniable opportunity for leaders in the games industry to take a stand and support the UN Environment team by communicating the importance of preserving natural resources for generations to come. At PlayStation, we believe games have the power to ignite social change through educating people, evoking emotions, and inspiring hope. We could not be more proud to be part of the Playing for the Planet Alliance and the commitments announced. We look forward to seeing what the industry can achieve together.
Microsoft, Ubisoft, Google Stadia, Twitch, Niantic, and more companies are all participating in the Playing for the Planet Alliance, each contributing commitments to reduce their overall carbon footprint and educate for social change. Microsoft, for example, is cutting emissions within manufacturing and delivery of its products. You can find more information on how each company is contributing at the Playing for the Planet Alliance website.