The following business example can also be applied to individuals and families.
The first requirement of the CarbonWall™ scheme is to reduce your carbon footprint and neutralise the rest. This makes you carbon neutral.
For example a business calculates their carbon footprint as 60 tonnes Co2. They reduce their carbon footprint to 40 tonnes by making changes such as swapping renewable energy, using video conferencing rather than business flights and purchasing sustainable materials from local sources.
After reducing its carbon footprint to 40 tonnes the business now neutralises the remaining 40 tonnes of Co2 by paying a verified carbon offsetting scheme around £5 – £15 per tonne. They are now carbon neutral.
Carbon Reduction Suggestions
Air travel puts significant amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. It is sometimes mistakenly labelled as an efficient and low carbon form of transport. Air travel encourages people to travel thousands more miles than they would normally. A long-haul return flight for one person could produce more carbon dioxide than your entire household energy bills for an entire year.
Renewable energy is becoming increasingly available to businesses and households and can now be bought for broadly the same price as energy from non-renewable sources. If you haven't done so already, making this simple transition will help to reduce your environmental footprint.
Producing meat is highly resource intensive. Particularly beef and lamb. Whilst white meat has a lower carbon footprint the welfare practices of standard white meat production is very poor. It might seem surprising but reducing your meat consumption is one of the most effective ways of reducing your carbon footprint. Switching to plant based options can have huge environmental and animal welfare benefits.
It can be tempting to buy the cheapest, but the cheapest is often associated with a higher environmental or social impact. Research your suppliers and try to invest in those that make meaning contributions to the health of the environment. Differentiate yourself from your competitors by telling people about ethically responsible choices. Many people are prepared to pay a little more when they know that they are helping the environment.
As the world begins to value what it already has, we will begin to reduce the amount we consume. Buying second hand, re-using, recycling, borrowing and sharing helps us to form connections. Items that have reached the end of their life can be broken down into individual components and recycled to gain the maximum use out of these valuable raw materials. This activities all lower your environmental footprint.
As we move towards the goals of the CarbonWall™ scheme (goals that are universal and not specific to CarbonWall™) we will move towards sustainability. With this in mind, re-examine your business practices; the materials you use, the energy you use, your suppliers and their business practices and start to make changes to encourage a better, healthier planet.
In some cases it could mean finding a supplier that treats their workers better. In other cases this could mean paying a higher price to a smaller producer who benefits his/her community. 'Planet before Profit' is not always cheap at first sight, but in the long term is it linked to the survival of our entire planet. The bigger picture of the savings are immeasurable and absolutely essential.
As we lead by example, and find pleasure in doing so, we will encourage others to do the same. People will start to value the resources they already have. The days of endless purchasing will start to fade away as we find an even greater pleasure in examining what we already have and finding a sense of joy and wealth in where we already are. This new found happiness aligns more closely with the need to reduce the environmental damage caused by the mass production of goods we do not need.
Carbon Neutrality Questions
This can vary dramatically from business to business depending on the work involved and the amount of energy and materials being consumed. The Carbon footprint of a business with a turnover of £100,000 could range from 10 tonnes to 100 tonnes depending on a range of factors.
The typical Carbon Footprint of an adult in the United Kingdom is around 10 tonnes. A typical adult in India is just 1 tonne. This gives an indication of how much we consume.
In the UK, the typical carbon footprint of a family of four would be 36 tonnes Co2. In India the average Carbon Footprint of a family of 4 would be just 4 tonnes.