Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles - Fancy plane rides, pink Lamborghinis, and giant homes in California. Influencers love to flaunt a lavish lifestyle but what would actually happen to the planet if everybody lived like an influencer? - Better yet, how many Earths would we need to sustain the lifestyle of everyone saying, "Make sure you give this video a thumbs up. "Make sure you like, subscribe, "and you comp that merch below, bro." - Let's start with- - Driving, the thing I hate most on Earth. The most famous influencers live in America where 6 million cars are purchased each year. And in the year 2015, Americans' combined driving length was from Earth to Pluto and back 500 times. Most specifically though, influencers live here in the epicenter of the entertainment industry, La La Land. You might be a romantic and think of L.A. as the city of leading men swinging their arms and dancing on the big screen. But now it's more like beefcake men swinging something else on this small screen. In L.A., on average people drive 9.3 miles per day, which feels insane when you're from a place like Toronto, but it's actually 54% less than the rest of Southern California. This is because many Angelenos, which is what you're called when you live in L.A. which is kind of amazing, take public transit. But when is the last time you saw a vlogger or YouTuber on a bus? They'd be like, "Oh my God, is this on? "Do I look okay? (gasps) "It's taking a lot for me to tell you this, "and you know how much I love you guys. "Something really crazy happened to me. "Like story time, okay. "I had to take a bus." (dramatic instrumental music) - And the cream of the crop celebrities or influencers live here in the West L.A. hills, aka the Hollywood Hills. According to public data, people who live here drive the most out of everyone in all of L.A., and things add up quickly as any employee or friend also needs to drive up into these hills to get to your house, leading to an average of 11.1 vehicle miles traveled per day. This is why we constantly see influencers making videos in their car like this. - Hi, sisters. - Hi. (group laughing) - Oh my gosh, that was kind of scary. - Also, did you know that 20% of meals in America are actually eaten in the car? (sighs) The American dream. - I feel guilty. (crunches) - But if we're all rich influencers, we can afford to buy an electric vehicle like a Tesla, right? Let's assume we can. Buying a Tesla is still actually worse for the environment than taking public transit, and charging it still relies on the current power grid. Also, I am aware of the irony of me filming this in our car. I mean, we're influencers after all. ♪ Nobody's perfect ♪ - And since we're in Cali, it's not that bad. California has amazing renewable energy sources. In 2018 only 3.3% of the power grid came from coal and 0.16 came from crude oil, compared to the rest of America where 13.1% comes from coal and 36.4 from crude oil. So charging a Tesla in L.A. is pretty green compared to the rest of America and even the world. But California still relies pretty heavily on natural gas, not to mention the raw materials it takes to make a Tesla in the first place. When you add it all up, it starts taking a toll on the Earth. Based on eco footprint calculations, we would need 4.3 Earth to sustain a world where everyone had the same driving lifestyle as an influencer. That's just based off of driving in some pretty ideal conditions. But what about their- - Mansions? Huge houses require a lot of energy and electricity. To start, Americans consume 15% of the world's energy and 20% of the world's electricity, but make up only 4% of the world's population. For context, the people of India and Sub-Saharan Africa consume only 10% of the world's electricity but make up 33% of the world's population. Influencers tend to flaunt these large, gorgeous, costly homes, but the true cost is on the Earth. Take just air conditioning for example. More than half of the air conditioning units in the world are in China and the U.S., and keeping them running uses 2.5 times more electricity than the whole continent of Africa uses in a year. One study I found calculated that 6% of all electricity in the U.S. is used for air conditioning, and air conditioning our homes causes more than 100 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions every year. Not to mention the cement or concrete that's needed to build these large homes as, surprisingly, concrete accounts for 5% of global carbon dioxide emissions and is the second most consumed substance on Earth after water. But a lot of these influencers do their best. They carpool. They don't always eat meat. They are minimalists. Is that what this is? This looks like an evil villain's lair in a Disney movie. Even if we assume that these influencers never eat meat and that they have some energy efficient appliances in their home, you can run a calculation to find out that if we all drove and had mansions like L.A. influencers we would need 10.9 Earths to sustain the lifestyle. - So hold up. How are we calculating the amount of Earths? Using geographical locations and behavioral averages for income and neighborhood information, we can measure an influencer's global hectares. This measurement looks at how much land, sea, and other resources are needed to produce what each person's global hectare will be per year. And there's many online calculators where you can figure out your own eco footprint. But we're actually gonna need a lot more Earths because influencers, and us right now, are using a service that emits a lot more carbon dioxide than you might think, and that is- - Online video platforms. The energy needed to store, deliver, distribute, and even watch online video leads to 0.4 kilograms of CO2 emissions per hour. In 2018, 228.8 million people in the U.S. watched digital content for 82 minutes each day, adding 1.3 billion kilograms of CO2 to the atmosphere per year. So if we all became online influencers, our CO2 release would be astronomical. Plus, we'd be uploading so much and then downloading so much, so the servers and energy to cool the servers would be insane. Did you know that they're trying to put servers up in the Arctic so we don't have to spend as much money trying to cool them and as much energy trying to cool them? Either way, uploading and downloading all this video would be really bad for the planet. Not to mention- - The closet. (sighs) Back in the closet, I see. ♪ Hello darkness, my old friend ♪ - The fashion industry is the second most polluting industry in the world, responsible for 10% of greenhouse gas emissions. MIT calculated that the global impact of producing polyester alone was somewhere around 706 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, or about what 185 coal-fired power plants emit in a year. Let alone selling the products. So if 80% of people in the majority world shopped like influencers in L.A., we would see a 77% increase in carbon dioxide emissions associated with clothing production, a 20% increase in water usage, and 7% increase in land use. Who knew you'd have a gay man telling you to shop less. Usually, we just have girls being like, "Oh my God, be my gay best friend. "Come shopping with me." It's like, "Honey, if it ain't a circular economy, "it ain't happening." Not really killing it as the gay best friend right now, am I? We'll include all that info in the final tally of global hectares, but before we get to that, let's talk about an influencer's favorite substance, and I don't mean tummy tea. I mean- - Oil. Half the world's oil is consumed by only 17% of the world's population. These countries are known as the OECD nations and they are also responsible for 33% of the world's CO2 emissions. America itself produces 15% of the world's CO2 emissions, compared to Bangladesh who has half the population but only produces 1% of the world's CO2 emissions per year. Remember the sprawling mansions we mentioned earlier? People in Bangladesh do not live in these. The 163 million people of Bangladesh live within their country, which is the size of about Alabama. Americans, on average, consume 10 liters of oil a day, but we Canadians fare even worse at 10.2 liters of oil a day, compared to a Bangladeshi who only uses 0.1 liters of oil per day. A lot of this oil is used up from flying, which is something that influencers love to do even during a global pandemic. Ding. Even if we keep the influencer lifestyle vegan, we're also gonna assume that they're pretty much shopping only local. They got those expensive L.A. grocery stores. We're gonna include a flight from New York to L.A. every two months, which I think is actually being kind of generous for influencer lifestyles when you study them, but we're gonna put that in as a well. We discovered that if everyone lived like an influencer, we would need 12.9 Earths to sustain the lifestyle. (crickets chirping) So what can we collectively take away from this? - Video to dissect the idea of the aspirational lifestyle that affects all of us, including us. I mean, like I've got a fig tree back there. I want it to look pretty. We're all impacted by the consumption habits we see online and in media. But if we all lived like Bangladeshis, we would only need this much of the Earth to sustain all life, which is astounding. And in our current climate crisis, are these not in some ways an aspirational lifestyle? I know this can get complex and muddy when we talk about poverty or the quality of life, but the Global Happiness Council found that in 2017, Americans were the unhappiest they'd ever been since starting that initiative, even though they were working, eating, driving, and consuming more than ever. In fact, if we came together as a species and evenly distributed our fuel and energy consumption across the 7 billion people on this planet, we would all have the same energy use as somebody in Switzerland in the 1960s. Look at those gorg trams. Look at those cute little outfits. They honestly look happy. And the life expectancy of somebody in Switzerland in 1965 was the same as it is in America today, which is much higher than the world average.