Everyone knows that we are supposed to reduce our ‘carbon footprint’, but what is it?
The carbon footprint is a measure of total carbon dioxide or greenhouse gas emissions of a person, a household, a business or even a whole country. It is usually expressed in tonnes of carbon per year, or in planets. The national carbon footprint of the United Kingdom is 3.1. This means that if everyone in the world lived at the same standard as we do in the UK we would need 3.1 planets to sustain us all. The national carbon footprint of India is only 0.4, China is 0.9, but the United States is 5.3. The dilemma is in finding ways to reduce our high carbon footprints in the developed world but at the same time allowing people in developing countries to improve their standard of living without their carbon footprints rocketing.
You can calculate yours at http://footprint.wwf.org.uk/