How big is your carbon footprint

Some follow-up’s after the Live Earth concerts…

We already covered this on Scouseveg, but it’s always worth repeating. Also the Echo covered it the other week in a feature article:

So just how big is YOUR carbon footprint?
Jun 22 2007 By Liverpool Echo

SMALL and dainty or verging on yeti proportions … how big is your carbon footprint?

Now you can find out exactly what your impact is upon climate change – and all at the click of a mouse.

An online calculator has been launched to enable people to work out their carbon footprint; that is the amount of carbon dioxide they cause as part of their daily lives.

It asks questions about people’s personal energy consumption, including gas and electricity use, food and travel….

…. Leisa Maloney, 29, is a company director from Aigburth. She lives in an apartment with husband Mike and daughter Ruby.

“My husband and I both travel a lot for work. We have to go to America at least five or six times a year, which leaves us with no option but to fly.

“I go to London once or twice a week, but I always travel by train because it’s greener. Again, it’s one of those things I have to do for work.

“I’ll always buy locally-produced food and we never leave things on stand by or lights on.

“My little girl, Ruby, is very good on looking after the environment. She’s five and I think the emphasis on children’s programmes like Bob The Builder is very green now.”

Leisa was surprised to find her carbon footprint is 20.88 tonnes per year. More than half of this comes from flying for more than 35 hours a year.

“To be honest I’m shocked that my footprint is so big,” she says. “We recycle everything and always buy organic food, but at the moment we have to fly. I’d be very keen to try to reduce our carbon emissions in any way we can.”

As well as providing an estimate of how many tonnes of CO2 the individual or household is responsible for emitting each year, the new calculator also produces a personalised action plan advising people about what steps they can take to cut their emissions.

The Act On CO2 calculator can be found at www.direct.gov.uk/actonCO2 .

» Full article

Also from the above article »
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Ways to cut your carbon footprint:

Food

Cut down on meat and dairy produce.
Obviously we would advise people not to eat any meat or fish, better to go veggie. And we are not just saying that - there were news items about this the other week. Becoming a vegetarian or vegan will greatly help the planet.

Eating less meat and fish could reduce your food footprint by up to 40% because of the large area of land or sea needed to raise livestock and catch fish.

– Avoid over-packaged products

– Buy more seasonal food and reduce food miles by not buying produce which has been air freighted to the UK.

– Although we could meet more than 70% of our eating needs from food grown in the UK, we import more than half of the food we consume. Buying locally-grown, seasonal food (see picture) would mean we could reduce our food miles, use less packaging to preserve fresh produce, and help us reconnect with the annual patterns of seasonal produce.

Per mile, air freighting releases 10 times more CO2 than goods transported by road and 50 times more than sea freighted goods.

– Reading the labels can help you to find out the country of origin of your food, and retailers can tell you how it was delivered to the store. This will help you make informed choices about the distance your food has travelled before it lands on your plate.

Travel

– Walk instead of using other modes of transport.
– When possible, switch off the car engine when stationary.
– Reduce your car use for short journeys, especially those under two miles.

More than 25% of all car journeys made in the UK are less than two miles. Walking, cycling or taking public transport instead will help reduce congestion and carbon dioxide emissions and could also reduce your overall footprint by about 4%.

– Walking and cycling are ideal low-carbon ways to get fitter and to get to know your local area.

Home

– Turn down the thermostat in your house by at least one degree. This could cut your heating bills by 10%.
– Turn down the heating in rooms which you are not using.

Use recycled products.

Buy vintage or second hand clothing.

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Additional news coverage:
[The Guardian] Miliband launches carbon footprint calculator

Another link:
http://www.zerocarbonfootprint.co.uk/

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