Calculating the Cost of Carbon Emissions

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Calculating the Cost of Carbon Emissions | Future Business

How to limit your carbon footprint

Once your carbon emission calculations have been finalized and you have the results, the next step should be to put into practice an action plan to reduce your carbon footprint over time. According to Energy Trust Saving, in the UK, around 22% of the country’s carbon emissions come from our homes. When it comes to food, transportation, clothing, waste and how we live, small changes can make a big difference.

Transport

  • Cycle or use public transport on route to work. Where possible, cut road travel altogether by working remotely from home.
  • Rather than travelling on a plane to vacate, try alternative holiday destinations locally. Where possible, use the train to travel while on your next vacation.
  • When going on holiday, choose green hotels.
  • If you absolutely must own a vehicle, consider investing in an electric car. According to the International Council on Clean Transport, electric cars produce between 66 and 69 per cent lower lifetime emissions compared to that of a fossil-fuel-powered car.

Clothing

  • Avoid purchasing brand new clothing. Instead, try pre-loved alternatives from charity and second-hand shops.
  • Take good care of your clothes and try to keep them in good condition for as long as possible for extended wearability.
  • Embrace a minimalist lifestyle by decluttering your home and donating to charitable organisations.
  • Try to only buy clothes with an eco-label or clothing that is made from recycled material.

Food

  • Try to limit meat consumption (especially red meat) and instead try an alternative plant-based or vegetarian diet. According to a study from the Vegetarian Society, becoming a vegetarian for a year could save the same volume of carbon emissions as the equivalent of not driving a car on the road for six months.
  • When shopping, make sure to bring reusable shopping bags and avoid products with excessive plastic packaging.
  • Buy food in bulk to avoid travelling to and from the supermarket on a regular basis.
  • Try to eat locally produced food if possible to reduce the ‘food miles’ it has to travel to your plate, and eat organic where possible to reduce the use of pesticides and other agricultural chemicals.
  • Do not waste food! Around 1.3 billion tonnes of food are wasted globally every year. These wasted foods will end up in landfill and speed up the impact of climate change by releasing methane gas into the atmosphere.

Energy and waste

  • Turn down the heating by one degree in your house and unplug any electronic equipment that is not in use.
  • Limit your water usage by taking shorter showers and by turning the tap off when brushing your teeth or doing the dishes.
  • Reduce draughts and air leaks by insulating and sealing your home.
  • Don’t set your thermostat too high or too low.
  • Where possible, add solar panelling to the roof of your home.
  • Use clean energy alternatives to fossil fuels such as wind.
  • Replace traditional light bulbs with LED bulbs which use 80-90% less energy.
  • Limit your waste and try to recycle as much as possible.

Offsetting your carbon footprint

Offsetting your carbon footprint is a way to compensate for your carbon emissions by funding an equivalent carbon dioxide saving elsewhere such as donating to a charitable organisation that plants trees.

There are many offset offsetting projects and charitable organisations that you can donate to. Carbon Footprint has several offsetting projects that not only help with climate change but also provide services to local people in developing countries with education, jobs, food security, clean drinking water and health & well-being.

But while offsetting can play an important role in combating climate change, it is also vital that individuals and businesses do their part in changing their carbon footprint by making small but permanent changes in their personal and professional lives.

According to data from the United Nations, demand for natural resources is at an all-time high, with resource extraction increasing in triple numbers since 1970, including a 45% increase in fossil fuel use. With the global population estimated to grow to 9.6 billion by 2050, changing our consumer habits, our diets, how we travel and our energy usage has never been more vital. By calculating the cost of carbon emissions and making simple, climate-smart decisions, our choices have the ability to benefit everyone on a global scale.

SEE ALSO: Why Carbon Metrics and LCA Should be Approached With Caution

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