Table of Content

  1. Introduction
  2. What exactly is a carbon footprint?
  3. Where does the carbon footprint come from?
  4. 9 ways to reduce your carbon footprint
  5. Conclusion


Combating the climate crisis can seem to be a difficult challenge. We’re on a quest to get our members to live carbon-free lives, and sustainable home energy is a great place to start. Increased levels of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, primarily in the form of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, cause climate change. The longer we wait to address climate change, the worse the consequences will be. By reducing carbon footprints, every person, business, organisation, and government can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, protect our environment, and ensure the health of our climate.

What exactly is a carbon footprint?

The carbon footprint is a method of calculating our contribution to global warming. The amount of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) emitted into the environment as a direct result of your everyday activities determines your carbon footprint. A person’s carbon footprint is typically calculated as the sum of all of their direct and indirect carbon emissions over a year. The less carbon you emit, the better for the environment and the future. A larger footprint indicates that your activities emit more greenhouse gases and have a greater negative environmental impact.

Where does the carbon footprint come from?

Climate change is unquestionably real, and it is caused by greenhouse gas emissions from human activities. While some natural processes, such as volcanoes, do emit greenhouse gases, the amount of volcanic activity alone cannot account for the sharp increase in global CO2 concentrations. The pollution produced by humans doing human things, on the other hand, perfectly accounts for the increase.

  • Transportation accounted for about 28% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the United States in 2016. [two]
  • Another 28% comes from the generation, transmission, and distribution of electricity, which is primarily based on the combustion of fossil fuels.
  • The industrial processes that produce the raw materials and consumer goods we use everyday account for about 22% of the carbon footprint of the United States.

9 ways to reduce your carbon footprint

Although climate change is a global issue, local actions are crucial. Here are a few things you can do to reduce your carbon footprint and make a difference at home.

9 ways to reduce your carbon footprint
  1. When you want to reduce your carbon footprint, the first step is to calculate your current carbon footprint. Terrapass offers a free carbon footprint calculator to help you calculate your annual carbon footprint. You can take steps to reduce your impact once you know where your emissions come from.
  2. You save one pound of carbon emissions for every mile you walk, bike, carpool, or take public transportation instead of driving. Walking or biking to work is also a great way to get some exercise and will also help you to reduce your carbon footprint.
  3. If you already own a perfectly serviceable vehicle, don’t rush out and buy a new one. If you’re going to replace your car anyway, a fuel-efficient vehicle can help you reduce your carbon footprint significantly. An increase in fuel efficiency of just 3 miles per gallon can save you 3,000 pounds of CO2 per year. Even better, buy a used hybrid or fuel-efficient vehicle. This will help you to reduce your carbon footprint considerably.
  4. Jet fuel is a major contributor to carbon emissions, even if you want to travel to far-flung vacation destinations. Instead of flying making your home more energy efficient will not only help the environment, but it will also help you save money. Seal any air leaks in your home with caulk, insulation, and weather stripping. Replace your incandescent lights with energy-saving LEDs. You’ll save money on your energy bill, lower your carbon footprint, and improve your home’s comfort. around the world, consider staying close to home for your vacation. You can save 720 pounds of carbon emissions for every 1,600 miles of air travel avoided. Perhaps you could go on a road trip in that new electric car to save as much energy as possible.
  5. Power plants, particularly coal-burning power plants, which produce more than half of the electricity in the United States, are the single largest source of greenhouse gas emissions. Fortunately, thanks to the deregulation of the energy industry, you now have the power to choose your energy provider and make a difference. Choose a provider that uses renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, geothermal, and hydropower. We have green energy plans available in all of the markets we serve, so keep that in mind when selecting your next energy provider.
  6. Even when turned off, many appliances, such as televisions, computers, air conditioners, and microwaves, continue to draw power. Each device in “standby mode” consumes very little power on its own, but when combined, it can account for up to 10% of residential energy consumption. If you’re not using a device, unplug it instead of turning it off. Switching on a power strip also works, and it’s a quick fix if you have a lot of computer or entertainment devices that all share an outlet.
  7. Eating vegetarian is even more effective than eating locally. Because of the inefficient conversion of plant energy to animal energy, meat has a large carbon footprint. Every year, billions of animals must be fed, and all of that feed must be grown, harvested, and transported. To make room for grazing cattle, animal agriculture is also a leading cause of deforestation in the Amazon. Worse, all of those animals emit carbon in the form of methane, a greenhouse gas that is far more effective than CO2 at trapping heat in our atmosphere. Even if you only go vegetarian once a week, you will reduce your carbon footprint more than if you only eat local food.
  8. It takes a surprising amount of energy to pump, treat, and heat water. Pumping and treating water consumes 3% of the energy used in the United States. Reduced water waste lowers energy costs and lowers greenhouse gas emissions. Simple steps can be taken to conserve water in your home. Turn off the faucet while brushing your teeth, shower instead of bathing, and repair any leaking faucets or fixtures. A leaking toilet can waste up to 200 gallons of water per day, and it can usually be repaired for a few dollars in parts and seals from a home improvement store.
  9. For decades, the three R’s—reduce, reuse, and recycle—have been part of the American lexicon. There are several reasons for this phrase’s enduring popularity. It’s short and sweet, and the advice is as sound today as it was when it was first given. In your home, reducing, reusing, and recycling saves energy while also lowering greenhouse gas emissions from resource extraction, manufacturing, transportation, storage, and disposal. You can save 2,400 pounds of CO2 per year by recycling half of your household waste.


The greenhouse gases we emit today will remain in our atmosphere for thousands of years. For millennia, our actions—and inactions—will have a significant impact on our children, our children’s children, and future generations of all the planet’s inhabitants. Climate change may appear to be such a major issue that only governments and corporations can make a difference, but the truth is that everyone can make a difference every day. These ways to remove your carbon footprint can be a stepping stone towards making the planet a better place to live in. 


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