Carbon footprint is the measurement of the amount of land we need to survive. The land we need to grow crops, harvest resources, and dispose waste. The ideal carbon footprint is 1.73 global hectares per person. Unfortunately, the current carbon footprint is 2.84 global hectares per person and Canada’s average carbon footprint is 8.17 global hectares per person. We require 5.33 more global hectares to sustain ourselves than the average human. How do we lower this number?
The average Canadian footprint is largely due to our giant consumption of electricity and energy. Simple acts such as turning off the lights when you leave or using natural light can reduce your footprint and decrease your electricity cost! Furthermore, you can make a goal to start carpooling or to buy an electric car. The less electricity you need, the less your footprint and electricity bill is.
Probably the hardest goal for many is to eat less meat, especially red meat. Although delicious, red meat, such as beef, takes a great toll on the environment. One pound of beef requires 7 pounds of feed. Animals require a lot of water to grow their feed — to get beef, you would require around 16 thousand m3 of water per ton. Furthermore, the land needed to grow animals destroys many habitats. You do not have to stop eating meat, but try eating less meat, especially red meat.
Finally, eat local, organically grown food. Exotic foods require transportation to get to you. The further away the source is, the more costly the food is. You would need more fuel to bring the food to you by land, water, and/or air. Furthermore, some foods require special treatment, such as refrigeration. Long distances will increase the cost of the treatment. You can even try to grow some vegetables in your own backyard!
We must always try our best to save the environment and decrease our carbon footprint. If we reduce the footprint, we would make our lives, and the lives of the future generations better.