Urbanisation has created vast developments in terms of economic, social, cultural aspects of a country. It provides employment opportunities, home improvements, and economic uplifting for the people. One of the results of urbanisation is the increase in the number of cars and automobiles in the streets; expansion of factories and power plants, and the change in the lifestyles of people.
Having said that, there is something called carbon footprint. It is the measure of the negative impacts of human activities to the environment. It refers to the amount of greenhouse gasses produced on a daily basis through burning of fuels for electricity, heating, transportation, among others. The total amount of greenhouse gases produced is most of the time expressed in equivalent tons of carbon dioxide (CO2). In other words when you are driving a car, the fuel burned by your engine produces a certain amount of carbon.
Below is a sample of how you can contribute to your personal carbon footprint. Each of the activities add up to 1 kg of CO2:
- Travel by bus or a train on a public transportation of a distance between 10 to 20 km
- Travel by plane for a distance of 6 km
- Operating a computer for 32 hours
- Production of 2 plastic bottles
Understanding carbon footprint is the best tool to estimate how our personal activities and appliances contribute to the current amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. The good thing about carbon footprint is that you can calculate how much carbon you have contributed in a day. Calculators are available online.
By knowing how much you can add up to the current environmental problems is not just plain awareness. You can do something to lessen your impact on nature. You can educate yourself about what you can do to improve your lifestyle. Here is a list of simple ways to reduce your carbon footprint:
- Recycle water. You can use it to water your plants.
- Do your weekly shopping in a single trip.
- Turn off the lights and electronic devices not in use.
- Walk or ride a bicycle for short journeys
- Buy fruits in season and purchase locally made products
Keywords: carbon footprint, carbon dioxide, greenhouse gasses, waste, pollution, mobile sources