The environment. (1) Carbon footprint is known to
The need for carbon footprint reduction is not merely a necessity but also the most vital strategy for the planet’s survival.
(2) Increase in its usage or emissions will result to climate change that will then affect individuals, industry, and environment. (1) Carbon footprint is known to be the sum of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide emitted by activities caused by any living and non – living thing. (2) The bigger the emission, the larger is the effect on global warming. (3) In America alone, the total greenhouse gas emissions in 2009 were 6,633.
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2 Tg or million metric tons CO2 Eq, its emissions have increased by 7. % from 1990 – 2009. (4) In the United Kingdom last year (2010), emissions of the basket of six greenhouse gases covered by the Kyoto Protocol were provisionally estimated to be 582. 4 million tonnes carbon dioxide equivalent. It was 2.
8% higher than the 2009 figure of 566. 3 million tonnes. (5) It is said to increase dramatically this year. And so, the significance of its reduction, the particular effects on humans, the industry, and the environment are the main focus of this paper.
Carbon footprints increased emission rates greatly affected most if not all of the earths’ habitat.Animals, in the case of polar bears, are not able to keep up with the changing climate making their search for food more difficult and unpredictable. It is said that this specie will cease to exist after 100 years due to the rapid climate change. (6) In the tropical islands, the increase in sea temperature turns coral reefs at risk of survival. These amongst other issues has given the prediction that by 2050, one-fourth (1/4) of the earth’s species will be headed for extinction. (6) Environmental concerns such as increased risks of drought, fire, and flood has also been the result of too much carbon emission. 7) These phenomena are likely to occur more severe and frequent as the climate change progresses.
When one land is susceptible to drought, it is oftentimes vulnerable to flood as the surface underneath intensify its circulation, thereby, making its action rather abnormal and imbalanced. Hot and dry conditions increases possibilities of forests fires. America has calculated their increase in fires to 400%, and increase in land burned by 650% since 1970 due to longer summers and increases in spring and summer temperatures.
6) In human health, illnesses due to pollutions such as allergies, asthma, lupus, immune disease, and cancer increase each year. As more and more people uses electrical energy from coal and oil-fired generating plants, the larger the emission of pollutants spread into the earth’s atmosphere causing air pollution. (8) In Mali, people who work for agriculture especially women and children will increase its percentage of hunger from 34% to 64% about 40 years from now due to climate change making them struggle to obtain food crops.
(7) Drought causes diarrheal diseases because of un-sanitized and unsafe water.Vector-borne diseases such as malaria increases as the temperature rises allowing mosquitoes to live in countries that are moist or humid. (7) Talking about industry and economy, businesses and organizations has been the largest contributor of carbon footprints mainly because of their need to use fleet of vehicles and large buildings that needs to be lit and climate-controlled each day. (9) The International Council of Chemical Associations reported that in 2005 alone, around 3. 3 Gt CO2 emission was from the production of chemical feedstock and fuel delivered to the chemical industry. 10) In IT industry, ICT equipment accounts for 3-4% of the worlds’ carbon emission, similar to aviation industry.
(11) Overall, around one third of the world’s energy consumption and 36% of carbon dioxide emissions are due to manufacturing industries. Most of the demand for a higher carbon emission in industrial energy were from emerging economies. China accounts for around 80% of the growth in the last twenty five years. (12) Climate change will also affect local economies such as land and natural resources. Farmers will have lowered crop yields, fishermen will lose their livelihood as sea animals become extinct.These economic losses due to increase in carbon footprint has, for instance, threatened England’s lobster industry as catch plummeted and the increase in ocean temperature threatens the survival of coral reefs, a $375 billion worth of industry each year. (6) These major concerns brings about importance in carbon emission reduction.
Many aspects of decreasing carbon footprint such as reducing carbon emissions on water which includes reducing demand, adopting new technologies, improving operational efficiency, widening the use of renewable energy, improving design of equipment, and managing drainage systems all helps reduce carbon emissions. 13) Reduction on land emissions would include the continuous afforestration, optimize the structure and layout of land use, strengthen land use control, strengthen the saving of intensive land use, strengthen water and soil conservation and ecological protection also significantly contributes to lower emissions. It has been noted that forest carbon emission intensity is 0. 06 per hectare and the carbon absorption is 0. 49 tons per hectare. 14) Individual’s carbon footprint may be reduced by recycling, use of fuel efficient cars or better yet the use of public transport, changing to fluorescent lightbulbs, using thermostats appropriately, investing in double pane windows, minimal use of electricity and others are major contributors in reducing the amount of carbon emissions.
(4) These measures had resulted to a significant drop on global emission rate in 2009 by 1. 3%. However, it is said to have been projected to decrease by 2.
8% but was not realized due to the increase in fossil fuel consumption from developing countries such as China and India. 15) This year, United Kingdom has a Carbon Emission Reduction Target (CERT) of 293 Mt (lifetime) CO2 and currently heading towards achieving 207 Mt (lifetime) CO2, around 71% overall programme achievement to date. The largest emission reduction contributor, which accounts for 62%, is proper insulation, 25% is proper lightning. (16) In Northern Ireland, greenhouse gas emissions have fallen since 1990 to 6% greenhouse gases reduction and 4% reduction on carbon dioxide, its target reduction up until year 2025 are 25% in greenhouse gases emissions and 30% carbon dioxide emissions. 17) Carbon footprint increase consumption also increases the risks of many types of deathly diseases due to pollution brought about by certain industries particularly of developing countries such as China and India.
Animal extinction, land and water disruption resulting to economic losses are primarily due to a drastic change in climate caused by too much greenhouse gases and carbon dioxide emissions. 6) Many of the earths’ habitat are gradually losing its purpose of existence mainly because of mankind’s negligence and lack of sufficient knowledge on what too much emissions may do to individuals and environment. It is, therefore, of utmost significance for people to be informed and for each country to work on carbon footprint reduction. Such are cases in United States and United Kingdom where programs are strictly followed to help rehabilitate the environment.As of 2008, atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide is 370 parts per million as compared to the carbon dioxide concentration before the industrial revolution which is 280 parts per million (ppm). It is said to exceed 700 ppm around the end of the 20th century and could result to global warming between 1. 4 and 5.
8 degrees centigrade which may then lead to more severe and frequent weather conditions. (18) Reducing carbon footprint and helping the environment to be greener and air to be clearer will reduce the risks of serious global warming occurrence. Word Count: 1424