Find what a carbon footprint is, calculate yours and find out what impact it has and what you can do to reduce it.
Climate change affects everyone on Earth and has rapidly become a major challenge. Carbon Dioxide and other greenhouse gases are widely accepted as having a negative impact on our environment. The increase in energy consumption by an ever increasing population both directly and through manufacturing is putting an extraordinary load on our fragile planet.
Why is our planet getting warmer ?
Heat and radiation from the Sun warms our atmosphere, oceans and land, supporting life on Earth. The incoming radiation passes through the atmosphere to reach the surface but the atmosphere acts like a blanket, keeping much of the heat trapped. How much radiation is trapped depends on the concentration of greenhouse gases present in the atmosphere. The higher the concentration the harder it is for heat to radiate back out into space leading to an increase in surface temperature. Carbon Emissions, generated by businesses and individuals, primarily through energy consumption are rapidly increasing this concentration – creating a “thicker” blanket.What will happen if the temperature continues to rise ?
If we don’t significantly reduce the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere we can expect the planet to change significantly and the damage may be irreversible. Changes will include:
Extreme Weather – the increase in temperature will alter the complex weather systems around the planet leading to severe droughts in some areas and severe flooding in other. Storms and the damage they cause will increase leading the formation of Super Storms. This in turn will impact on food production leading to widespread famine.Sea Level Rise – as the temperature of the planet increases the ice caps will melt leading to significant increases in sea levels. This will make coastal plains, which are densely populated, uninhabitable. The increase in water temperature will lead to ocean acidification, reduced fish stocks and increased coral bleaching and disintegration.
Ozone Layer Depletion – the increase in the concentration of gases in the atmosphere increases chemical reactions leading to further depletion of the ozone layer. The Ozone Layer helps filter out harmful ultraviolet (UV-B) rays emitted by the sun. Thinning of this layer increases the risk of skin cancer, reduces levels of plankton in the oceans leading to fewer fish and has a disastrous impact on agricultural output.
Spread of Diseases – increases in ambient temperature will allow diseases, previously limited to a narrow band around the equator, to spread towards the poles, affecting more people and animals.
Ecosystem Changes – global warming will also dramatically change the delicate ecosystem leading to a significant reduction in biodiversity and forcing mass migration towards the north and south poles as the equatorial temperature rockets.What is YOUR impact on Global Warming ?
We are ALL affected by carbon dioxide emissions wherever we live. Even a small reduction in your household emissions will help reduce the load on the planet and help to preserve it for future generations. Every time you run a bath, boil the kettle, travel to work or go on holiday you are releasing carbon into the atmosphere.
The amount of carbon you personally produce in a year can be determined using the carbon calculator below. This measure of consumed natural resources, such as oil and gas, is known as your carbon footprint. Your carbon footprint, measured in tonnes of carbon dioxide per year, gives an indication of your personal impact on the environment.What can you do before it’s too late ?
Here are 10 simple changes that will make a big difference and save you money:
- Reuse carrier bags
- Use public transport or walk wherever possible
- Switch off lights when you’re not in a room and turn off appliances at the mains
- Turn you heating down slightly and improve your home's insulation
- Switch to renewable energy and low energy light bulbs
- Recycle everything you can including bottles, paper, magazines, cardboard and printer cartridges
- Call companies that send you junk mail and ask to be removed from their mailing list
- Change to online banking, cancel your paper statement and don’t print unless you really need to
- Use a mug at work instead of polystyrene cups and drink tap not bottled water
- Plant a tree – trees absorb Carbon Dioxide
It’s your planet and your children’s planet. You CAN make a difference you just need to start…What is Scubatogs doing to reduce its Carbon Footprint?
We have implemented a number of changes within the business to reduce our Carbon Footprint. These include:
- Replacing our standard light bulbs with energy efficient light bulbs
- Switching off all non essential equipment overnight
- We order from local suppliers wherever possible and ensure they have an environmental policy
- We recycle as much waste as possible including plastic, glass, paper, magazines, cardboard, packaging materials, metal and clothing.
- We use mugs for tea and coffee and only boil the water we need
- Turning down the heating and wearing more of our clothing range
- We don’t print and send packaging slips or invoices – our customers can now view them online
- We wrap our clothing in tissue paper not plastic bags
- Switched to blank screen savers on our PCs
- Ordering in bulk to reduce manufacturing and transport emissions
For more information on our Carbon Footprint policy email us at firstname.lastname@example.org