Tackling climate change - The best ways to reduce your carbon footprint

Tackling climate change - the best ways to reduce your carbon footprint

As climate change affects the health of the planet, it’s important to do our part to offset its negative impacts. One key way to reduce climate change effectively is by reducing our emissions of carbon.

What is a carbon footprint?

A carbon footprint is the amount of carbon dioxide released in the atmosphere from a certain individual, organisation, or community. It includes carbon dioxide, the gas most commonly emitted by humans and others this includes methane, nitrous oxide, and fluorinated gases, which trap heat in the atmosphere, causing global warming. Normally, travel, living and food are the major sources of an individual's carbon footprint. This article provides an overview of how we can reduce our Co2 emissions.

How to reduce your carbon footprint

Eat with the seasons

Eating seasonally produced foods will help reduce the emissions of CO2 that food trucks produce while transporting food. Shopping locally and understanding which vendors have locally sourced products will help reduce transportation emissions.

Eating less meat will also help reduce your carbon footprint. This is because the production of red meat uses a lot of feed, water and land. Cows themselves also give off large amounts of methane (a harmful greenhouse gas). The Environmental Research Letters journal in 2017* reports that the impact of red meat on the environment might be up to 100 times higher than that of plant-based food.


Transport is another major source of global emissions. These emissions exceeded electricity generation as the leading greenhouse gas source in November 2017**. Using public transport and riding a bike can help reduce your CO2 emission. If you are looking at getting a new car, why not go electric.

At home

Here are few tips to help reduce your CO2 emission at home:

Keep blinds closed to maintain a constant temperature inside.
Turn your water heater down - 120 degrees Fahrenheit is sufficient.
Turn off appliances to reduce even more energy at the power outlet. It's second-best to put them off.

Understand your footprint

Completing a carbon footprint calculator will give you a more concise analysis of what your carbon footprint is. More importantly, it will give you the insight you need to make positive changes. The carbon footprint calculator below should help in providing the information you need to reduce your carbon footprint. Take a look at these two calculators to see your personal impact:

• WWF Footprint Calculator

• Carbon Footprint

Climate change is a challenge that needs to be met with societal as well as individual changes. Hopefully, by implementing some of these tips into your life, you can be assured that you are doing your bit to reduce our hunger for carbon.

* https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/1748-9326/aa6cd5/meta

** https://www.climatecentral.org/gallery/graphics/transportation-is-the-biggest-source-of-us-emissions?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=News%20Emissions&utm_content=News%20Emissions+CID_b0f3d2117d9fbe587e1dc8e9e86b353f&utm_source=Climate%20Central%20Email%20Campaign%20Monitor&utm_term=transportation%20emissions

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