Climate change requires drastic steps and complex solutions to be fully controlled. However, you don’t have to do all these overnight. Here are small steps you can do to help in your daily life to reduce your carbon footprint and therefore lessen your contribution to the world’s carbon emissions.
Passenger vehicles are some of the worst offenders when it comes to pollution. In 2013, a study shows that more than half of the harmful carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides emissions come from transport. With more cars on the road, we expect worse pollution conditions.
Consider other modes of transport such as walking and biking. Also, try using your city’s public transport system. If you really can’t avoid using a car, consider carpooling, especially if you know other people who need to travel the same route as you.
Consider a change in diet
If you are highly dedicated in alleviating climate change, going vegan or vegetarian is the way to go. For some who cannot let go of meat, try a flexitarian diet. This diet involves the gradual incorporation of plant-based meals without completely forgoing meat.
Being mindful of the type of meat that you eat also matters. World Resources Institute (WRI) lists down different food types and their contribution to greenhouse gas emissions.
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From the looks of it, you really should consider letting go of beef, lamb, and goat meat.
Purchasing imported food impact the carbon footprint because they need to be shipped long distances which contribute to emissions. At the same time, off-season crops require greenhouses which consume a lot of energy. To minimize carbon footprint, increase your purchase of local and seasonal food products. Support farmers’ market or local bazaars in your area. You’re sure to find good buys and you may be surprised with what products you can find in your locale.
Participate in green projects
United Nations has a compilation of projects you can partake in. Just check the available projects in your area and sign up. If you can’t find any in the website, there are most likely initiatives from your local government and private organizations you can participate in that you can find within several clicks.
Production and transport embed a considerable amount of carbon footprint in the things you buy and too much consumerism is harming the planet. By buying less clothes, vehicles, and electronics, you are helping not only the environment but also your own pocket. You may find also find joy in decluttering your life.
Monitor your carbon footprint
Monitoring allows you to check whether or not you are making progress. UC Berkeley’s Quick Carbon Footprint Estimate makes this easy for you. This test roughly calculates your contribution to the world’s carbon emissions. With this, you are guided on what steps you can take to reduce your carbon footprint.
Exercise your rights
There are things you cannot do on your own. In these circumstances, you should call on those who have the power and privilege to perform the change you desire. As citizens and consumers, we can cast pressure on our governments and corporations to consider sustainability in their policies and decisions.
The items above may seem small and have no impact but if all of us contribute our part, then our small steps will be something bigger that can make an impact.