Lifting hundreds of millions of people out of “extreme poverty” – where they live on less than US$1.90 per day – would drive a global increase in emissions of less than 1%, according to new research.
A carbon footprint is a best guess about how much greenhouse gas my actions (and those taken on my behalf) cause to be put into the atmosphere. It’s an attempt to measure the harm I do, understand it and then reduce it by making different choices. If you’re wondering whether it matters, I recommend reading The Uninhabitable Earth.
What is most important, to live with as small a carbon footprint as possible or to prioritize collective action to change laws, rules, and incentives? For me, this is not the right question to ask.
That’s according to Peter Kalmus, an atmospheric scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, in California. Alarmed by drastic changes in the Earth’s climate systems, Kalmus, embarked on a journey to change his life and the world in the process. He cut his carbon footprint by 90 percent.
It is widely assumed that the ongoing migration of rural peoples to mega-cities all over the world will help reduce humanity’s per-capita energy footprint, while giving people a higher standard of living and accelerating energy transition.
I’m a climate scientist who doesn’t fly…I’d assumed that electricity and driving were my largest sources of emissions. Instead, it turned out that the 50,000 miles I’d flown that year.
Over 15 years ago, Melbourne mounted a long-term campaign to change the way it uses energy and has attracted international acclaim for its commitment to sustainability.