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what is your carbon footprint?

Leonard Washington

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it think its ironic that BP is so into energy conservation. kinda like philip morris telling us smoking is bad.


Your carbon footprint is a representation of the effect you, or your organization, have on the climate in terms of the total amount of greenhouse gases you produce (measured in units of carbon dioxide). Many of your actions generate carbon emissions, which contribute to accelerating global warming and climate change. By measuring your carbon footprint through such tools as the SafeClimate Carbon Calculator, you can get a better sense of what your individual impact is and which parts of your lifestyle deserve the greatest attention. Armed with such information you can more readily take effective action to shrink your carbon footprint, thereby minimizing your personal impact on the climate.

For example, when you drive a car, each gallon of gasoline you burn produces carbon in the form of carbon dioxide. Depending on the fuel efficiency of your vehicle and the milestraveled, a gasoline-powered car can easily generate its own weight in carbon dioxide each year. The average American is responsible for about 20 tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year, a far greater per capita number than that of any other industrialized country. In fact, the US accounts for more than 20% of the world's total greenhouse gas emissions. You can reduce your carbon footprint by driving a more efficient car, or driving less. You can also plant trees or help preserve forests to offset your emissions, since trees are a sink for carbon.

The carbon footprint calculator estimates CO2 emissions for energy use and transportation, and for organizations paper use, because these types of activities are responsible for a significant percentage of U.S. emissions, and are measurable based on readily available information. Your total carbon footprint would account for the energy used to produce all the products and services you consume, as well asall your other activities, and would be substantially larger. Home energy use and transportation represent approximately 40% of all U.S. emissions, so for an average person the emissions from these two activities would have to be multiplied by 2.5 to determine the person's total carbon footprint.

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