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Foot Prints in CO2

May 5, 2007

Last winter I heard about a concept that was some what new to me called the CO2 foot print.  Its kind of a buzz word, but basically represents the amount of CO2 that a person or family or business generates.  CO2 or carbon dioxide (the di means 2 parts oxygen) is a green house gas, named because plants need this to produce oxygen.  When there are not enough plants like trees to consume this CO2 that we create then the planet starts to fill up with un-breathable CO2 and the planet heats up and before you know it we are all living on a Venus like planet.

So I heard about this buzz word last winter when Al Gore was revealed to have a pretty large CO2 foot print in his big mansion of a house.  He has been working to retro fit his home with energy saving devices and other green friendly concepts.

This week as the Queen of England hopped across the pond for the 400th aniversary of the Jamestown settlement (she was here 50 years ago also for the 350th aniversary), the queen indicated that she would be working to offset the CO2 foot print of her trip.  Meaning she would have some trees planted to make up for all the fuel burned and other things.

I was reading through Skeet's blog, a fairly regular read for me, and came across her article mentioning her close line and how this is one way that she uses to save energy.  She also mentioned an article she came across detailing a couple dozen or so ways for the average person to either save energy or reduce their CO2 foot print by offsetting their energy expenditures.

Now, as I read that I thought of some ways that were not covered that can also help.

  1. Do not mow your grass.  Cutting grass pollutes the air, releasing gas from the cut blades into the air (think of that cut grass smell, that's actually pollution!)
  2. Cut your grass less. The more you cut your grass the faster it grows and the more it appears to need a another cut.
  3. Compost yard and food waste.  This doesn't save the CO2 foot print soo much but it does reduce the amount of stuff filling up the land fill.  It does save CO2 in that you do not have to buy fertilizer, which is a trip to the store which burns gas creating CO2.
  4. Burn dead wood.  When trees fall down in your yard or property, burn it in a wood burning stove to heat your home in the winter, offsetting the electricity or gas that you would normally consume. (I'm not saying to cut down live trees, but use the dead ones.)  Plus this helps keep things picked up reducing the potential for wild fires to grow out of control.
  5. Turn off your computer at night
  6. Unplug appliances when you are not using them.
  7. Put in solar powered lights outside or put lights with auto switches for movement and light sensors.
  8. Get a motorcycle.  There's only one of you and driving a car, even a small one capable of holding 4-8 people just to commute your lonesome is very wasteful.  I'm not saying you should get a Harley Fatboy, get something small and nimble and safe.  My motorcycle gets 60-70 mpg and doesn't waste energy or create more congestion.
  9. Work from home!  Stop making excuses and stop accepting them from your employer.  Work from home.

WooHoo ed by Brett Bumeter at 9:45 AM  


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