So…who is Carbon and why are their footprints everywhere?

Over the past number of years (if we were really listening), but especially the past few months, there has been so much talk about ‘Emissions’ ‘greenhouse gases’ and ‘Carbon Footprint’, but what does it all mean ?

To try to understand our ‘Carbon Footprint’, let’s go back to basics…

Our earth’s atmosphere is made up of a mixture of lots of different kinds of gases. Some have warming effects and some have cooling effects and both of these help to keep the Earth at a nice steady temperature.

However, today, the Earth has a problem.

Because, the massive increase in greenhouse gases (Understand about Greenhouse gases here: www.wasted.ie/understanding-climate-change/#1556306297396-15fbe0af-654d) in our atmosphere means that too much heat is being trapped in the Earth’s atmosphere and the Earth is heating up. We can all see what this overall heating of the planet has on different affects on climate systems around the world – floods are becoming more frequent in some parts of the world and droughts are happening more often in other parts. We now have more extreme climatic events across the globe than ever before.

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Carbon Dioxide

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is emitted by each of us each day, naturally (by breathing!). This amount of CO2 heading into the atmosphere is fine, because the earth is set up for this level.

Emissions

But then we start adding in more and more cars, more airplane journeys. We are expending more and more energy, burning more fossil fuels (actually, hopefully this is now less). All of these carry huge CO2 emissions.

A carbon footprint is the amount of carbon that is emitted by us humans every day – individually and collectively.

Your Personal Carbon Footprint, is the amount of carbon that is emitted by you personally, as a result of the choices you make each day. Almost everything you do leaves a carbon footprint. When you drive you car, when you take a shower, go on a holiday abroad.

Carbon emissions (and other greenhouse gases) are also caused by the burning of fossil fuels in the environment. In fact, any activity to fulfil a human need requires energy that emits carbon dioxide. The electricity we use is mostly made from fossil fuels (such as coal, natural gas and oil).

At Wasted.ie, we would like to try to educate you to ascertain what your current levels of CO2 are and how you may be able to reduce these.

Earth’s atmosphere

Our earth’s atmosphere is made up of a mixture of lots of different kinds of gases. Some have warming effects and some have cooling effects and both of these have help to keep the Earth at a nice steady temperature.

The Sun

So, the sun’s rays heat the Earth. Some of this heat escapes back into space and some of it is trapped by a blanket of ‘greenhouse gases’. For many millions of years, this was just the right amount to keep the Earth at the perfect temperature.