How to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
How to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint is a useful book on what you can do to help reduce the climate emergency, without feeling overwhelmed. Do you want to live an eco-friendly life, but don’t know where to start? This non-preachy book is packed with simple and achievable ways to reduce your carbon footprint, from reducing plastic use to shopping sustainably.
The book begins with a global snapshot of the problems: 2019 was the hottest year on record and temperatures are set to rise still over the next few years, with floods and heavy rain having quadrupled in the last years, yet snow cover reducing also. In 2019 there were over 120 extreme weather records worldwide, including snow in Hawaii and heatwaves in Alaska. But nothing is yet set in stone, and following the tips in this little book can make a big difference, if we all enact them together. You’ll also learn about climate change crusaders, and how to make a difference.
4 Best Ways to Reduce Carbon Footprint
The experts all says that these four changes together make up far more difference, than anything else combined. A carbon footprint is simply the emissions that you emit: how you live, what you buy (or don’t buy), how you travel etc. Industry emits most emissions, but we will be waiting a long time for business and politics to change, so we need to do this ourselves. A study in Environmental Research letters found the most effective ways to reduce our carbon footprint are:
- Have less children
- Drive less
- Eat more plants
- Stop or reduce flying
Just these four changes to your daily lifestyle does more than all the recycling in the world. Of course, you may wish to have children (or already have them), so just do what you can to raise zero waste children. And eat more plants, if you won’t commit the whole way. And if you have to fly, then choose a greener airline, and take your own books and reusable coffee cup, rather than use all the plastic trash at the airport.
Start by taking Mukti Mitchell’s free carbon calculator. Voted the best in the world, this can reduce your carbon emissions by up to 10%, with no major changes to your lifestyle (Mukti is the son of ecological writer Satish Kumar, and once built himself a micro solar yacht and sailed it around the British Isles). He and his friend Darren Hall have created the beautiful site Carbon Savvy, where you have 10 steps to take to reduce carbon emissions, focused on health, nature, communities, transport, heating, holidays and shopping. Some of their suggestions include:
- Insulate your home to be warmer & save bills
- If you fly, visit closer places (or visit less often).
- Downsize your car to a fuel-efficient vehicle
- Walk or cycle to work, or share lifts
- Buy high-quality items that last
- Switch to a greener energy company
- Buy local seasonal organic food
- Eat more plants – less meat & dairy
- Learn to repair goods yourself
- Take public transport (trains, buses)