6 Things That Contribute to Your Carbon Footprint that You Haven’t Thought About
Jan 07 2021
Every day we are constantly inundated with news and opinions on what is causing the climate crisis our planet is facing and what we need to do about it. Climate change is an increasingly concerning issue for everyone, but it’s often hard to see where people can make a significant impact in their daily lives. It’s easy to see the big changes like switching to an electric car, or growing all your food or buying it local, or even reducing your waste to the point that all your trash for a year can fit in a mason jar, but those aren’t attainable for most people! Those are all valuable contributions to the fight against climate change, but there are also plenty of small changes that everyone can make in their everyday lifestyle in order to reduce their carbon footprint. Here are 6 things that contribute to your carbon footprint that many people may not have thought about.
Regularly service your car
We all know that driving creates a significant carbon footprint through the fuel that cars burn and the emissions that they subsequently release. However, for many people cars are a necessity in order to support themselves and live their lives. One way that people can reduce unnecessary emissions is by regularly servicing their car and ensuring that it is running at optimal efficiency. When a car is not running properly, that can result in it burning additional fuel and releasing more emissions than it should under normal operating conditions. Regularly checking your oil, coolant, and tire pressure are all easy ways to make sure your car is performing at it’s best and it only takes a few minutes of your time. You can also utilize public transportation whenever possible, to reduce the amount of trips you need to take in your car. This both reduces your emissions and cuts down on wear and tear on your own vehicle.
Unplug electronics when not in use
One way to significantly reduce your carbon impact is to cut down on the amount of electricity that your home uses every month. Leaving electronic devices plugged in or turned on while not in use can use a lot of power, especially if you have game consoles, computers, TV’s, fans, and other appliances plugged in and running all the time when they aren’t being used. Going around regularly and unplugging or turning off anything that isn’t actively being used can make a sizable impact on your home’s carbon footprint. This not only reduces the amount of energy used by your house every month, but it also saves you money when your electric bill comes around. Another great way to reduce your monthly energy usage is to switch to LED lightbulbs and smart chargers that will turn off when not in use. There are plenty of smart devices for your home that can save energy and provide you with convenient controls.
Adjust the foods you eat
All the food we buy and eat has a huge carbon footprint that is often not recognized, but there are many ways we can reduce it. These include not throwing food away and buying local, and even cutting down on the amount of meat that you eat. The meat industry is the primary source of methane emissions, one of the most dangerous greenhouse gases. This gives meat products one of the largest carbon footprints out of all the food groups. Substituting more easily sourced options for meat in several of your meals throughout the week can add up to a big impact over time. While many people recoil at the idea of reducing meat consumption, there are so many healthier and more environmentally friendly alternatives. There’s really no excuse anymore to not branch out a bit in your diet.
Seal any leaks in your home
Heating and cooling homes is a huge part of the amount of energy and fossil fuels that the average household consumes, and both of those can lead to a significant carbon footprint. Taking the time to seal all your windows and doors and turn off your heating or air conditioning can dramatically reduce the amount of energy it takes to heat and cool your home, because it isn’t all being wasted leaking out of cracks and holes. It’s also good to fix any leaking faucets to reduce the amount of water waste in your household. These fixes are great for the planet and they can save homeowners hundreds of dollars a year on their utility bills. That means they practically pay for themselves!
Buy clothes that will last
The fashion industry is one of the largest polluters in the world, as it has both a large impact on the amount of waste created around the world, in addition to creating a massive carbon footprint. This is due in large part to the rise of what is known as “fast fashion”; much of the clothing sold in stores is very cheaply manufactured in large quantities and is intended to last for a fairly short amount of time and be replaced whenever styles change. Buying clothes from brands that value longevity means you will have high quality clothing that looks great and won’t need to be replaced in less than a year. This means less clothing has to be manufactured, and less cheap clothing ends up in landfills every year.
Use EcoCart when shopping online
Online shopping is an often overlooked cause of carbon emissions, even though it consumes a massive amount of resources to manufacture, package, and ship billions of packages around the world every year. Online shopping has also led to an increase in the amount that people buy, due to the ease and convenience of buying from the comfort of your own home and having it shipped directly to you. As more and more people turn to online shopping, EcoCart is a great way to start reducing your carbon footprint by offsetting the carbon footprint of orders you place online. All you have to do is install the EcoCart extension in two easy clicks and you’ll be on your way to a more sustainable shopping experience.
You can make a difference
It’s easy to think that our carbon footprint isn’t that big of a deal, or that there’s nothing the average person can really do about it. However, nothing could be further from the truth. The average person can make a tremendous difference in the carbon footprint they create and often save a lot of money and increase their quality of life at the same time. Having a car that runs well, and energy efficient home and lifestyle choices that prioritize quality over convenience is not only great for the planet it’s great for you too! Sustainability doesn’t have to be a burden. It can save you money and improve your life in countless ways.