Eco Chat Episode 9 – Focus, Carbon Footprint – what is it and how to reduce it.

Eco Chat Episode 9 – Focus, Carbon Footprint – what is it and how to reduce it.
The focus for this week’s eco chat is Carbon Footprint. I wanted to give you some information on where to go to check your personal carbon footprint, some ideas on how to reduce it and some comparisons of every day products.

Watch the full video here or check out a rough transcript below.

The focus for the evening is carbon footprint. It will be a short one from me but I will be posting some links below so you can follow up on this throughout the week. I’d be really interested to hear from you in the comments once you have done your carbon footprint test to see if you are going to implement any changes.

First things first, what is a carbon footprint?

The amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere as a result of the activities of a particular individual, organization, or community.

One of the most damaging gases which contribute to global warming is methane which is 28 times more dangerous than carbon dioxide. Cows produce 250-500 litres, per day but did you know that food waste that ends up in landfill (as well as all other landfill items) also produce an astonishing amount of methane which is slowly damaging our ozone layer.

The first thing that springs to mind when we talk about Carbon Footprint is the use of cars and aeroplanes, however calculating your own personal carbon footprint shows that it is a lot more in depth than that.

Things like switching to a renewable energy tariff, turning off appliances when they’re not in use, having shorter showers, walking to the local shop or school instead of taking the car, using energy saving light bulbs – they all make a huge difference to our individual impact. Also, reducing the food we waste and making sure we properly compost that we do need to throw away, can make a significant reduction to our personal carbon footprints.

If you would like to find out what you carbon footprint is, follow this link. It takes you to a very short survey, will calculate your footprint but then give you some hints on ways to reduce it.

You can also download a copy of the checklist used in the 90 Day Get Eco Plan so that you can take a look at some potential changes to make. Click the link at the end of the blog to get access. Save it on your desktop or print it off, just keep it handy and check items off as and when you are able to change them. I’ve also included a line where you can write your current carbon footprint and then you can take the test again in a few months and see if it has changed.

I’ve posted about it before, the book – How Bad Are Bananas – is a great resource and I’m going to share some crazy facts with you now:

Kg of carbon dioxide equivalent per kg produced –

1. Beer (local cask ale) 1.2kg, wine shipped from New Zealand 2kg, wine imported by road from France 2.3kg

2. Asparagus in season in UK 1.1kg, Asparagus airfreighted from Peru 18.5kg

3. A person annual footprint – 0.2 tonnes Malawian, 13 tonnes Briton, 21 tonnes North American, World average 7 tonnes

4. 250g cheese – 1.6kg goats cheese, 3kg cheddar, 4.8kg parmesan

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