You might have several questions on what carbon footprint is and its importance. We will cover all the necessary topics to make sure you know about the issues relating to climate change and how to reduce your carbon footprint.
The change in climate is a huge challenge faced by humans in this generation. We are standing at the edge to witness a massive disaster. But we can still do small things to decrease the damages. We must reduce our carbon footprint.
Also read: The Massive Carbon Footprint Of Your Coffee: Tips To Reduce It
Definition Of Carbon Footprint
You can reduce your footprints at home, school, or even at work. All you need to do is reduce the amount of energy that you consume like consuming lesser animal products, shopping locally, and reducing your wastes.
Carbon footprint is the sum of greenhouse gases released into the air due to industries or domestic actions. It is measured in CO2e or carbon dioxide equivalents.
Greenhouse Gases are the ones that block heat from escaping the Earth. The main greenhouse gases are carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide. The process by which this trapping of heat is seen is known as The Greenhouse Effect. These emissions cause the planet to heat up at an unbelievable rate.
Due to these changes in temperature, climate changes are observed all over the world. The surface temperatures increase due to the collection of these gases and lead to Global Warming. Coal, natural gas, and oil are some of the fossil fuels that lead to Global Warming.
Also read: All Future Oil Exploration Halted In Greenland In Bid To Combat Climate Change
Measuring the Average Carbon Footprint
Various studies have been published related to footprints in a particular nation. The data that are found seem to be encouraging but the data takes only the responsible ones into account.
The UK showed a 43% decrease in annual emissions since 1980 but the actual greenhouse gases emitted have increased.
It is possible to measure the average emission per person, too. The data looks at per-capita carbon dioxide emissions which an average Australian emits 16.96 tonnes of carbon dioxide.
The main factors driving the rise in emissions are-
Energy, Land-use and forestry, Agriculture, Waste Generation, and Industrial Processes.
What Is My Carbon Footprint?
Look at various areas in your life to know more about your carbon footprint.
1: Energy Use At Home And Waste Generation
Ask yourself, how much electricity, gas, and fuels am I using? Can I recycle or reuse the products? Is my waste going to the proper disposal sites?
Ask yourself, how much am I using public transport? Am I overusing my car or bike to travel? Can I use a cycle instead of a bike?
3: Your Daily Diet
Ask yourself, what type of food am I consuming? Is the food being transported from a distant place? How much is the food being transported?
Ask yourself, how often do I buy new gadgets? Can I reuse my clothes, goods, and electronics?
After you ask yourself these questions you can easily answer them. You can contribute to reducing the greenhouse gases yourself. Small changes that you make to your lifestyle play a big role in the environment. The reduction in carbon footprint will improve your lifestyle and save you a few bucks every time.
How Do I Reduce My Carbon Footprint?
These small steps are enough to reduce the emissions at home. These are quick and easy to achieve and you can boast about leading an eco-friendly life.
1: Home insulation
You can insulate your walls and lofts to allow heat retention during the winters. The rooms will stay cool during the summers, due to insulation. This saves you the cost and energy of heating your living rooms. You will use lesser energy and reduce your carbon footprints. This will lead to lesser bills.
2: Renewable Energy
Switch to renewable resources. Choose the energy provider carefully and make sure they are generating from solar or wind resources. You can reduce your carbon footprint and also save money in turn. You can choose to install panels on your roof to power your own house.
3: Less Wastage Of Water
Energy is required to clean and pump water to our houses. It also takes energy to heat up the water. Try to save water and avoid wastage. Turn off your taps while you are brushing or avoid boiling water in water heaters.
Meat and its products require water and energy in massive amounts. They also produce methane in large quantities. Try to reduce the intake of these animal products and shop for food locally.
5: Switch Off Lights
Office spaces drain a lot of energy. Try to switch off lights or gadgets when you are not using them. Make sure to avoid wasting power. Install automatic lights with motion sensors to take care of this issue.
Also read: Carbon Footprint Studies- Men Leave Bigger Footprints Than Their Counterpart
Walk to work or use a cycle. They are good for the Earth as well as for your health. Try to walk wherever it is possible. Avoid using private vehicles even though the distances are small.
7. 3 R’s
Always try to reduce the use of paper or electronics. These things bear a heavy carbon footprint. Try your best to reuse and recycle these goods when you are done.
8. Single-use Plastics
These things might be easily available but are very harmful to the planet. Avoid using disposable cups and forks to help you reduce your footprint.
It is quite good to compost your food waste. You can reduce the methane produced by large landfills and it is free for you to compost. It generates fertilizers for your gardens and does not require energy in production.
10. Water Bottles
Cut down the use of bottles as they are made of plastic. Carry a bottle with you where you go. This helps in cutting down the costs of energy and reduces the carbon footprint. The manufacturing and transportation costs of the bottle are also saved.