You might be surprised to know that the average person fills an incredible sixty-five double-decker buses with carbon dioxide each year. As many of you know, carbon dioxide, alongside other greenhouse gases, sits in the atmosphere and acts as a blanket, trapping heat and contributing to global warming.
Everything in modern-day life seems to come down to numbers. In my lifetime, which extends to approximately 19,500 days, the planet’s population has more than doubled from 3.5 billion to more than 7.8 billion people, with each person being or becoming a consumer.
Take a moment to think about that; in less than 20,000 days, the population of the earth has doubled! And every single person is contributing to the planet’s woes. It’s also showing no signs of slowing down, with many researchers predicting the planet’s population will reach a mind-boggling 10 billion around 2050 to 2055.
So what’s the obvious answer to solving the planets problem that people don’t like thinking about? It is, of course, having fewer people on it. In addition to their insatiable needs and wants, people through just breathing are releasing 2.94 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide every year and this figure will continue to grow.
Some people will try to put on a spin on the breathing aspect by stating that humans are all part of a natural cycle and aren’t adding any extra CO2. That, for me, is still a topic for debate. Until we have the appropriate unequivocal technology that measures the true impact of basic biological human life functions, we need to consider the headline number of 2.94 billion tonnes of CO2.
Obviously, drastically reducing the planet’s population is off the table, even though humankind and nature, over recent times, seem to be doing their best to achieve this.
Today is Earth Day, and it’s vital that we understand the impact of our carbon footprints. With that in mind, Mark Sait, the CEO and Founder of money-saving and sustainability consultancy, SaveMoneyCutCarbon has shared with us a couple of simple tips that will go some way to helping the planet.
- Lighting accounts for roughly 5% of global carbon dioxide emissions. Switching to LED lighting in your home could reduce the energy you use by up to 85 and over 1,400 million tons of C02! LEDs require less power than traditional bulbs, and the less energy you use, the better it is for the environment.
- Energy is also needed to filter, heat, and pump water at home, contributing to your carbon footprint, and you can do tons of things to save water at home. Turning running taps off and installing a water butt are a few examples. Shorter showers can also save up to 350 kilograms of carbon dioxide a year and help cut down your energy bills.
- For those of you that want to tackle the biggest carbon emitter of all, transport! Electric scooters and bikes will not only reduce your carbon footprint by about 0.5 tonnes over a year, but they’ll also put a huge grin on your face.
In addition to electric scooters and bikes, there is the option of switching to electric cars. However, that is not quite as straightforward as some might think, particularly if you are one of the many who is keen to avoid depreciation on what is a rather expensive asset. You can read why in one of our recent opinion pieces on electric cars.