What is a carbon footprint?

What is a carbon footprint?

January 19th, 2010

A carbon footprint is the total of all greenhouse gas emissions caused directly and indirectly by an individual, organization, event or product. Some greenhouse gases occur naturally, others are caused by human activity. The two major greenhouse gases are water vapor and carbon dioxide. Greenhouse gases trap the heat of the sun in the Earth’s atmosphere. Some believe that collectively humans are producing enough greenhouse gases to have an effect on the earth’s climate by causing global warming. Others believe that man’s activities do produce greenhouse gases, but in such relatively small quantities that we don’t affect the earth’s climate or cause global warming.

How big is your carbon footprint?

You can calculate your carbon footprint by adding up all of the greenhouse gas emissions emitted into the air from activities you do every day such as drive a car, heat or cool your home, heat or cool water or throw away trash that goes into a landfill. Depending on where you live, you may be buying electricity from a company that emits greenhouse gases because it generates electricity from burning fossil fuels—such as coal, oil and natural gas. Fossil fuels are non-renewable sources of energy.

Is it important to know your carbon footprint?

The main reason to know your carbon footprint is to be aware of how much your activity affects the earth’s atmosphere. As of now, there is no proof that human activity does or does not cause global warming. However, there are enough people that do believe humans cause global warming that they are asking our government to find alternative fuels and to tax individuals and companies based on the amount of greenhouse gas emissions we produce each year. This carbon tax will be used to help the government pay for developing renewable fuels that will offset these carbon footprints and therefore stop or reverse global warming.

Voluntarily reducing your carbon footprint.

There are people who want to voluntarily do what they can to reduce their emissions as well as do activities that will offset their emissions. There are many things we can do on a voluntary basis that will reduce our emissions. Small changes at home can make big reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Using Energy Star products is one way. Contact us now to find out more about the Energy Star products we offer or other suggestions we have to reduce your energy costs.