What Is My Carbon Footprint?

What is a my Carbon Footprint? My carbon footprint is the amount of "equivalent" tons of carbon dioxide gas that I produce as greenhouse gases for the things I do and have as a human being. Said in another way, your carbon footprint is the amount of CO2 gas produced by the things you do and have. CO2 gas is a greenhouse gas that comes from driving a car, among other things, is considered by many to one of the chief causes of global warming. The message to get here about carbon footprint is that the bigger that our footprints are – the quicker we have greenhouse gases build up in the atmosphere. And the faster that greenhouse gases buildup the quicker is our global warming.

Examples To Demonstrate Carbon Footprint
For example – driving a 8 mpg Hummer gives me a huge carbon footprint compared to my actual carbon footprint that I really have by driving my 50 mpg Toyota Prius.
Another example of the size of your carbon footprint is dictated by the type and amount of food you buy. For example, let’s say that you eat eggs. So you get in your car and drive to the grocery store to buy some eggs. At the egg stand in the store, there are how many choices for eggs? 30 different types of eggs, from just pure egg whites in a box to free range, organic, hormone free eggs.
But, if you look you might be able to see where the eggs came from. Where were they shipped from? To reduce your carbon footprint, you would want to pick the egg carton that advertised locally grown. Check the fine print to make sure that they are from a city near your home town to make sure that they are really locally grown.
Why does buying locally produced eggs reduce your carbon footprint? Well it is simple. If the eggs that I buy are only shipped 10 miles to where I buy them then there is only so much CO2 given off by the truck that delivers the eggs. But, if I buy eggs that we’re produced from a non local farm, I could be eating eggs that were produced 1,500 miles away. In this case, there would be a lot more CO2 produced by eating these eggs than the local ones that I could have chosen. According to Bill McKibben in his book Deep Economy, ‘the average bite of American food has traveled more than 1,500 miles before it reaches your lips, changing hands an average of six times along the way." Food is a huge addition to anyone’s carbon footprint.

Interesting Facts About Our Carbon Footprint

Travelling by public transportation is always best, especially in cities that have converted their transportation fleets to alternative fuels. San Francisco is a great example of a city that has converted over 70% of its public transportation fleet to alternative fuel vehicles.

Using your automobile to get around is 3 times as bad on the environment as compared to using public transit.

Flying in a plane is even worse than travelling in a car as it is 9 times as bad for the environment than using public transit.

Carbon Footprint A Buzzword – But Is Useful For Awareness
The term carbon footprint is a buzz word in the environmental conservation community. It is actually a pretty good term to use in thinking about the impacts each of us have on the environment. When thinking about your home and where you live, installing energy efficient solar hot water heaters reduces your carbon footprint – not to mention reducing your electric bill. Buying a home with a southern exposure in the northeast and allowing the sun to heat your home during the day reduces your carbon footprint. Buying locally grown food reduces your carbon footprint.
If you have a desire to have a positive impact on the environment and are considering buying a home, you may want to ask yourself this question: "which home gives me the smallest carbon footprint." Just make sure that you send this article to your real estate agent if you want to ask them about a home’s carbon footprint. Chances are, they probably will need to learn a little about it before they can help you find a low carbon footprint home.
You can calculate your carbon footprint at: Yahoo Green.