Environment: treading lightly on the Earth
Environment: treading lightly on the Earth

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

Free course

Environment: treading lightly on the Earth

4.4.2 How can you reduce your carbon footprint?

Having seen how one couple managed to reduce their carbon footprint, you will now return to the carbon calculator to explore how you might be able to reduce your carbon footprint to a target level.

Activity 11 Reducing your carbon footprint

Timing: Allow about 1 hour 30 minutes

Use the carbon calculator to explore how to reduce your carbon footprint to your chosen target by following the steps below.

  • Open the carbon calculator (click on ‘View interative version’ in this link).
  • With the calculator running and set on your existing footprint, which you made in Activity 7, select a footprint reduction target (you can open your existing footprint by selecting the Summary tab and open your existing footprint file).
  • On the Target screen, select either a Personal OR a Government reduction target.
    • Personal target: first select the ‘Accept footprint’ button to set Your existing footprint value. Your footprint on the bar chart and Summary screen will appear in the box. Then in the box below type in a percentage reduction target on Your footprint.
    • Government targets: select a percentage reduction (30%, 46% or 54%) on the UK Average consumption-based footprint (approximately equivalent to reductions of 35%, 50% and 57% in the territorial footprint in 1990 on which UK carbon budgets are based).
  • Use the calculator to explore how your existing footprint might be reduced to your chosen target level. Do this by selecting the calculator’s tabs and changing answers to the questions.
  • When you are satisfied that you have reached – or done your best to reach – your target, save your reduced footprint using a different name (e.g. 30GovtFootprint1)
  • Additional guidance and FAQs can be found here [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] .
Described image
Figure 14 Target screen: My Existing Footprint 1 saved and a Personal target of a 25% reduction on that existing footprint set

If you haven’t managed to reach your target, you have the option of further reducing your footprint via non-household emission reduction measures paid towards by you but undertaken by government or others in Activity 13 in Section 5.

U116_5

Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to university level study, find out more about the types of qualifications we offer, including our entry level Access courses and Certificates.

Not ready for University study then browse over 900 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus