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  • Individual Carbon Footprint - April 2023

    6th July 2023

    Eynsford Green Team: Personal Carbon Footprint Monthly 2022 and 2023

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    My carbon footprint in April (0.55 T/CO2e) was higher than March (0.42 T/CO2e) because I took a return flight to Ireland (0.2T/co2e). It is lower than April 2022 because last year I took a return flight to Athens (0.72T/CO2e).

    April Month: Personal Carbon Footprint 2023 total 0.55T/Co2e

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    The month is dominated by the flight I took. Why is flying such a driver of carbon emission? The simple explanation is distance. The emissions per passenger from flying short haul are around 115g/km, which is around the emission per km of one person in a relatively efficient car. The problem is we fly long distances, so my flight to Kerry and back is 1300km, the distance you might drive in the whole month. It contributed 0.2T/Co2e of my total footprint in the month of 0.55T/co2e.

    To keep my carbon footprint down I need to minimize the distances I fly (or not at all). For comparison if I took a return flight to Sydney , the emissions would be over 5T/co2E – more than my current total annual footprint. So I am choosing to fly less and only short haul, making the most of the diversity Europe has to offer rather than fly to other continents.

    Questions

    We would love to receive any questions and could use this forum to discuss the most common ones. info@eynsfordparishcouncil.org.uk

    Author: Holly Ivaldi

  • Individual Carbon Footprint - May 2023

    6th July 2023

    Eynsford Green Team: Personal Carbon Footprint Monthly 2022 and 2023

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    My carbon footprint in May (0.39 T/CO2e) was lower than April (0.55 T/CO2e) because April included a flight to Ireland (0.2T/co2e). It is similar to May 2022 though the mix is different. I now have an electric car so electricity is larger this year but petrol should be lower. In practice in May I had a holiday in NW Scotland and this increased the car mileage so the footprint ended up similar to 2022. The impact from alternative travel options to Scotland (1300 miles return) I compare below.

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    The main alternatives to get to NW Scotland were take the electric car, take a small petrol car (99g/km), take train to Inverness and hire a car, fly to Inverness and hire a car. The carbon impact of the four options is above, with flying being the greatest impact at 0.35 T/CO2e, the electric car lowest at 0.04 T/CO2e, a tenth of the impact of flying. A small petrol car with 2 people is 0.12 T and train 0.08 T. Interesting that sharing a small petrol car brings it close to the train.

    We chose to take the small petrol car, given concerns about finding charging points in NW Scotland. In practice, rather ironically, the nearest charging point to the place in Torridon was only 3 miles away and the nearest garage for fuel was 20 miles away. The Scottish government have been developing charging points very strongly.

    Questions : We would love to receive and discuss any questions info@eynsfordparishcouncil.org.uk

    Author: Holly Ivaldi

  • Individual Carbon Footprint - June 2023

    6th July 2023

    Eynsford Green Team: Personal Carbon Footprint Monthly 2022 and 2023

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    My carbon footprint in June (0.29T/CO2e) was lower than May (0.40 T/CO2e) because May included a return trip in a petrol car to Scotland. June is the lowest month so far, my gas usage for heating was minimal. It is also lower than June 2022 (0.37) mainly because the electric car means grid electricity replaces petrol use for transport .

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    A question was raised this month about offsetting. Given that flights are such a large contributor to a personal carbon footprint, does offsetting the flight solve the problem?

    Carbon offsetting aims to balance the negative CO2e impact of an activity (eg. a flight) with an equal but opposite, positive (eg. CO2 sequestration) activity such as tree planting. I am, though, skeptical about them…

    Offset - pros

    Conceptually a nice idea – offset bad activity with good activity

    Offsetting - cons

    Carbon offsetting does not work on the core issue of reducing CO2 emissions - we are already significantly in excess of the total environmental capacity of our planet – we have to actually reduce our impact not just balance it out

    Offsetting can mean we don’t change our personal behaviour - we need to reduce our impact, offsetting lulls us into a false belief that our activity is balanced out and we can continue as now

    Offsetting projects have different effectiveness rates and evidence is appearing that many of them are not delivering the CO2 reduction that is claimed, for instance tree planting must both be real, incremental and long term (ie the trees maintained for 50 years)

    Questions : We would love to receive and discuss any questions info@eynsfordparishcouncil.org.uk

    Author: Holly Ivaldi

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