After research by William E. Rees and Mathis Wackernagel was conducted in the mid-90s, the term ‘carbon footprint’ was coined. It refers to the amount of greenhouse gas emissions per year for each person’s actions including energy and food consumption, and transportations. The average annual carbon footprint per person should be 4 tons of carbon-equivalent emissions and needs to be less than 2 tons in the coming years to avoid extremely high temperatures. Here are some tips to start reducing your own carbon footprint and save the planet.
Eat Locally & Organically
Did you know that harmful emissions are linked to what we put on our plates? Research showed that there is a way you can have an environment-friendly diet. It consists of mainly eating local goods instead of imported which is equivalent to saving 1,000 miles of driving. This is because it would require less fuel to transport and keep food cool. It was also proven that eating organic, plant-based foods and less red meat can help reduce your carbon footprints since organic systems use less energy.
Watch Water Consumption
Reducing your water consumption is another way you can limit your carbon footprint at home. Even if it’s the smallest effort like closing off the water while brushing your teeth can go a long way. There’s only less than 4% of the water on earth that is safe to consume by humans while the rest is either too salty or locked in glaciers and snow. That’s why any change you do matters, so start by taking shorter showers and get a low-flow showerhead to reduce hot water which emits around 350 pounds of CO2.
Reduce Electricity Usage
In 2019, the United States electricity consumption from multiple sources led to the emission of 1.72 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide. So if you’re looking to reduce your part in these statistics, start watching your own electricity usage. Make sure you switch your current heating system to a more modern air source heat pump. Little things like turning off unused lights and unplugging devices that are not needed can go a long way. Get a smart meter to keep an eye on your energy use and make changes accordingly.
Re-evaluate Home Appliances
There are certain home appliances that are known as ‘vampires’ for sucking a huge amount of energy that you need to beware of. One of the most common ones is the tumble dryer since they consume 5 times more energy than the washer. So to reduce your energy consumption at home, opt for line drying your clothes the good old-fashioned way. Other steps you can take are setting your washing machine at 30℃ instead of 60℃ and replacing your lights with LED bulbs that take 85% less energy and last longer.
Switch to Sustainable Energy
Reducing energy consumption from regular sources (oil and gas) is one thing, but to take it to the next level, consider changing your energy source altogether. The sun for starters can be a great energy source, that’s why the specialists at www.shoalhavensolar.com.au believe that installing an energy-efficient solar system at home is the perfect recipe for a better carbon footprint. It’s designed to suit your needs as well as your energy-saving goals after a thorough inspection. You can also choose between a solar and battery system or a solar, battery, and car charge system.
Add Some Plants
One of the easiest ways you can significantly reduce your carbon footprint is to add some plants to your home. Even if you don’t have much space, there are many plants that don’t take much space and others that don’t need much attention if you’re always on the move. However, if you do have enough space, go all out with a whole garden full of trees, vegetables, and bee-friendly flowers. It can also be done on a smaller scale on your balcony if you live in an apartment. These plants or home gardens will not only absorb the CO2 from the air but will also give you a cooling effect, not to mention they make your space look more lively.
There you have it, with these simple tips, you can actually significantly reduce your carbon footprint and make the planet last a little longer. Don’t underestimate any small steps or changes you make, the important thing is to just get started then with time, you can make bigger environment-friendly choices in your life. Remember to apply changes outside your home as well by trying to drive less or shopping for vintage or second-hand clothing.