Use the calculator
In order to calculate your individual footprint, we recommend you the Twenergy calculator. You answer simple questions about your home and in a few clicks you know how many CO2 tons you are emitting into the atmosphere each year and if this is more or less than the national average.
Another one of the most popular and comprehensive calculators is Carbon Footprint. It enables you to choose the term you want to measure (minimum one month) and it will indicate a target with areas for improvement in order to reduce your carbon footprint.
Reduce your carbon footprint
Once you have the diagnosis – your carbon footprint – you can start reducing it. At first it may seem like a huge task, but it is important to remember that it only takes a few small changes to significantly reduce your environmental impact:
1. Disconnect all the electrical appliances you don’t use. Some electrical appliances in your home use more energy than you think and they don’t always have to be plugged in. We are not asking you to unplug your refrigerator (unless you are going on a long holiday), but, what is the point of leaving the television, the DVD, the Hi-Fi and your laptop on standby? Why have three or four chargers plugged in when they are not connected to a mobile or a tablet? Not to mention leaving the lights on in rooms when there is nobody in them. This battlefront is essential and apart from reducing your carbon footprint, it will help you save money on your electricity bill.
2. Clean your refrigerator. It may seem silly, but the more plastic bags and packages you have in your refrigerator, the more energy it will consume, since it will need more power to keep your food cold.
3. Use environmentally-friendly transport. Whenever possible, leave your car or motorbike and use your legs or a bicycle to get to your destination. If you must travel a fair distance, choose public transport (and ask your town council to renew its fleet of buses so they are more environmentally-friendly).
4. Recycle. There is no excuse and surely you are not so cynical as to hide behind the urban legend that says everything gets mixed together in the end. It is not true and there is a fully structured circuit for the collection and recycling of glass, cardboard/paper, plastic, batteries, medicine… And while we are on the subject, if you go shopping, take a fabric bag or a trolley with you so you don’t have to use plastic bags unnecessarily.
Now you know what a carbon footprint is. Now you know how to reduce it. Now you simply have to do your bit. All together, we can maximise our impact to improve our ecosystem.