Reduce Your Carbon Footprint and Increase Your Health

September 10, 2013 Family, Travel

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There are a number of ways to go about reducing your carbon footprint as a way of living a greener lifestyle and helping the planet. In fact, many methods of reducing your carbon footprint are also effective in improving your individual health.

Save the Earth! We may need it later

Recent studies have shown that there are now more pollutants going into the Earth’s atmosphere on a daily basis than ever before. This has led to what many scientists believe could ultimately mean the demise of the planet overall in the form of global warming, increased water levels and the eradication of the Earth’s protective Ozone layer. Now more than ever, it is our responsibility as inhabitants of the planet to reverse the damage that we have caused over the course of the past several decades in order to leave the world a better place for future generations.

Fortunately, for those who are interested in doing their part and making a difference, there are a number of ways to go about reducing one’s carbon footprint as a way of living a greener lifestyle and helping the planet. In fact, many methods of reducing one’s carbon footprint are also effective in improving one’s individual health, making this a win-win situation for everybody involved.

global warming
Source: Altra Point

What is a Carbon Footprint?

“Carbon footprint” is a term that is thrown around quite often, but many people do not know what it really means. Essentially, a carbon footprint is a measurement of the amount of carbon dioxide emitted into the planet’s atmosphere as a result of the consumption or use of fossil fuels. This measurement can be applied to an individual, family or group. Therefore, if you are looking for ways to reduce the carbon footprint at your household, then you may want to try and get the other members of your home involved, as well.

footprint

Reconsider How You Commute

These days, most residents of Canada own at least one vehicle, and many larger families own two or more. This is true in most cities across the country with the exception of larger cities, such as Toronto, where it is more common to commute via bike or public transportation. What many people do not consider is just how much carbon dioxide is emitted each and every time they use a personal vehicle for transportation. Even fuel-efficient cars, if only driven with one or two people inside, can result in a waste of fossil fuels and thus a larger-than-necessary carbon footprint.

If you are the type of person who tends to drive a personal vehicle everywhere you go, now would be a good time to reconsider that habit. Look into local bus routes and see if there are any that work with your schedule, and think about taking even just one or two days out of the week to commute exclusively by bus or other means of public transportation. This will reduce the amount of carbon dioxide emitted into the atmosphere right in your immediate area, which results in cleaner air and better health for all.

If you are looking to take it a step further, you may even want to consider starting to commute by bike, especially during warmer times of the year such as spring and summer. Not only will this save you a substantial amount of money on fuel costs, but it will also reduce your carbon footprint and improve your health in the process. Even a 20-minute bike commute to work or school both ways can burn hundreds of calories per day, resulting in better physical health for you overall.

bus

Grow Your Own Food

Aside from transportation, you can also reduce your carbon footprint and live a healthier lifestyle by growing your own fruits, veggies and herbs. Even if you live in an area without much gardening space, you can purchase boxes to build your own raised garden. From there, you can make less trips to the grocery store, which results in less carbon dioxide being released into the environment. Furthermore, you will know where your foods are coming from and be confident they are not genetically modified, which further increases your health and saves you money on your monthly grocery bill. Not to mention, running your own garden can be quite the rewarding experience!

tomatoes

While carbon dioxide production is a major concern for our planet, the good news is that there are small things we can all do to make a difference. Consider trying out some of the above tips to reduce your carbon footprint and improve your health.

What healthy steps do you take to reduce your “footprint?”

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