There’s no doubt that we can all reduce our carbon footprint, but there’s one segment of the population who drastically need to cut their carbon output: the rich. Recent headlines have made it clear that the poor are impact most by climate issues, while the rich can afford solutions the rest of us cannot. What’s more, according to the UN, the wealthiest 1% produce double the combined carbon emissions of the poorest 50%. The richest 5% contributed 37% of emissions growth between 1990 and 2015.
If we’re going to avoid climate catastrophe then we need the polluter elite to do their part – not just the rest of us.
He continued: â€œRich people who fly a lot may think they can offset their emissions by tree-planting schemes or projects to capture carbon from the air. But these schemes are highly contentious and theyâ€™re not proven over time.
The wealthy, he said, â€œsimply must fly less and drive less. Even if they own an electric SUV thatâ€™s still a drain on the energy system and all the emissions created making the vehicle in the first placeâ€.
Sam Hall, from the Conservative Environment Network, told BBC News: “Itâ€™s right to emphasise the importance of fairness in delivering (emissions cuts) – and policy could make it easier for people and businesses to go green – through incentives, targeted regulation and nudges.
A new UK-based shoe company, Allbirds, wants you to know it cares about your carbon footprint. The clothing industry alone is estimated to contribute 4% of the global greenhouse gas emissions per year, meaning the industry has a lot of room for more efficient and sustainable practices. Allbirds was founded with the goal of making sustainable shoes and to inspire the entire clothing and fashion industry to be more ecologically sustainable.
Of course, the best thing you do when it comes to fashion is to not buy new clothes and repair the ones you already one.
Allbirdsâ€™ environmental goal is to eliminate carbon emissions from its products, from the raw materials it uses to the CO2 produced by shoes as they decompose in landfill sites. Its approach is to measure its emissions, reduce its environmental impact by including recycled or natural fabrics, and then offset anything that remains.
Measuring emissions is complex because there are several processes involved in producing goods, but the company estimates the carbon footprint of an average Allbirds product is 7.6 kg CO2e (carbon dioxide equivalent emissions). That equates to putting five loads of laundry through a dryer, it has calculated, and compares to 12.5 kg CO2e for the average standard sneaker, pera methodused by Allbirds based in part on anMIT studythat looked at how to reduce emissions in footwear production.
When it comes to reducing your carbon footprint it’s not what you do it’s what can you do. For some people it’s not a big expensive to install solar panels on their homes, whereas others don’t own a home. Every individual action counts. Once you’ve figured out what’s possible for you to do, you should celebrate it by telling as many people as possible. Since every individual action counts, the more individuals doing something to help the planet can make a large collective impact.
Social influence can drive change, says Diana Ivanova, a research fellow at the School of Earth and Environment at University of Leeds in England who reviewed emissions reduction options in April in Environmental Research Letters. If you see other people taking steps to shrink their carbon footprints, â€œyou may feel more empowered to enact changes yourself.â€
Researchers call this transmission of ideas and behaviors through a population â€œbehavioral contagion.â€ Thatâ€™s where individual action can be a potent force for change, says Robert Frank, a Cornell University economist. â€œInstalling solar panels, buying an electric vehicle or adopting a more climate-friendly diet donâ€™t just increase the likelihood of others taking similar steps, it also deepens oneâ€™s sense of identity as a climate advocate,â€ Frank writes in his 2020 book, Under the Influence: Putting Peer Pressure to Work. Those actions can also encourage other meaningful actions, like supporting candidates who favor climate-protecting legislation.
A team has started a Kickstarter campaign to label a product’s carbon footprint so consumers can make better decisions about which brand to buy. The labels are meant to bring attention to the additional cost of wasteful production and a bunch of brands have already joined the initiative.
Of course the best way to help the environment is to follow the first R and reduce your consumption in the first place.
Solutions to seriously mitigate climate change exist, but they are not free. You know whatisfree right now? Emitting greenhouse gases.Let’s change that.
By joiningCertified Climate Neutral, businesses can choose to pay forallof their carbon emissionsandaccelerate the implementation of low-carbon technologies. Becoming Climate Neutral Certified is soaffordable, immediate, and measurably impactfulthat it should be theminimum standardfor what it means to be a sustainable business.
It’s been known for years that urban centres have a lower carbon footprint than the lands of urban sprawl. This is a for a variety of reasons and it’s rather complex, sure most of it comes down to density, but the exact know how is still being figure out.
Over at Alternatives Journal they looked at how building sustainable cities makes better cities overall. This is how and why people make resilient cities.
FOR EXAMPLE, existing low-density suburban developments â€œactually increase the damage on the environment while also making that damage harder to see and to address,â€ wrote Green Metropolis author David Owen. Although Forbes ranked Vermont as the greenest US state in 2007, Owenâ€™s 2009 article revealed that a typical Vermonter consumed 2,063 litres of gasoline per year â€“ almost 400 hundred litres more than the US national average at that time. This vast consumption is primarily due to single-use zoning and the absence of a comprehensive public transit system. Contrary to popular belief, dense cities such as New York City typically have the lowest carbon footprints. NYC emits 7.1 tonnes of greenhouse gases per person per year, or less than 30 per cent of the US national average. This is due to its extreme compactness. Over 80 per cent of Manhattanites travel to work by public transit, by bicycle or on foot. Population density also lowers energy and water use, limits material consumption and decreases the production of solid waste. For example, Japanâ€™s urban areas are five times denser than Canadaâ€™s, and the consumption of energy per capita in Japan is 40 per cent lower.