So let’s compare shoe size, shall we?
Producing 200kg of paper, the average we each use every year, creates between 130 - 250kg of CO2 depending on the source of energy. That’s comparable to the CO2 produced by an average family car over a distance of 960km. In fact an article in the Times Online highlighted a study by a Harvard University Physicist which revealed that a complex on-line Google search lasting several minutes can generate an estimated 5-10g of CO2. Bear in mind that boiling the kettle for a cup of tea generates 15g of CO2.
Even your steak dinner tonight has a footprint! Beef and veal have the biggest carbon footprint of all meats - and let’s not forget methane, another greenhouse gas. Flatulent farm animals are responsible for 14% of all methane emissions - that’s a yeti-sized footprint.
Could you imagine living in a society that told you to “consider the environment before you Google search” or “eating steak damages the environment” - that sounds too much like Big Brother, right! And yet most e-mails in circulation today load you with environmental guilt if you contemplate pressing the print button.
It’s time to be more honest with ourselves. Carbon footprints are everywhere. Deciding on our own is a lifestyle choice. But it’s better to be fully aware of all the facts in order to make the best choices.