Over the past few years climate change has grown to be arguably the biggest challenge for us to address. It is getting much more coverage in mainstream news, while this is critical in our ability to combat it, it can be very distressing as we learn more. It gets politicized, but that doesn’t help resolve the issue. The ever-growing evidence can be overwhelming for someone who wants to help.
Over the holidays, I had time to reflect. Generally, I am optimistic and believe in innovation and our ability to solve big problems. I consider myself an environmentalist. I worry about using too much gasoline, heating my house with oil. I try to teach my kids to walk places, consume less. However, I realized despite my worries and talking, I am actually doing very little to combat climate change. How can one person make an impact? I decided to do some research and share what I have found on this blog. I won’t get political (for the most part), but want to simply learn the options, do what makes sense for me, and share what I learn. I am not doing this to convince people that climate change is an issue. If you don’t believe in climate change, go read another blog. Hopefully, some of the resources and research I do will motivate a few others to take action. Furthermore, if there are other great ideas it would be wonderful to learn about them.
The first thing I realized I should do is benchmark myself. If I don’t know how much carbon I contribute, where should I start? I found a few sites that will do a carbon footprint. I used Terrapass to calculate my footprint, and this is what I found
This was extremely disappointing to me. However, as I reflect on it, it makes sense. I travel a lot for work which drives up my CO2. I live in the northeast, so heating can be expensive.
In my initial research, there are quite a few options. There is a lot of fantastic information, but I found the solutions are fragmented: renewable sources for electricity vary by region & provider, airline carbon credits are available with some airlines but not others, tax credits for solar panel installation, heating system conversion incentives from utilities. Over the next few months, I will share what I learn. Hopefully, this helps others who are also interested in reducing their carbon footprint.