Tag Archives: Carbon Footprint

Offset Your Website’s Carbon Footprint

CarbonFree Blog

While writing about yesterday’s post as always when looking for Carbon offsets my go to link is carbonfund.org I added the link and was checking out what was new on the site and noticed this link – Make Your Website or Blog CarbonFree® Clicked it and found out there was an option for bloggers and website owners to offset their carbon footprints! Loved the idea and thought it prudent to make a post on it. Also the fact that this post gets me free carbon offsets for a year (so our green blog is becomes truly Green and carbon neutral!)

I have often wondered what the carbon footprint would be of worldwide computer/web use. On searching for answers I came across an article by James Kanter in the NY times in 2008 about The computer age and Its Carbon footprint. He was of course talking about all the gadgets we use which are plugged in and use vast volumes of powerful semiconductors and communication towers. A good chunk of that is computers and cell phones. According to some estimates almost 2% of global carbon emissions were from this sector.

So what can we do? Yeah, we can take all the available steps to reduce our power consumption like – Using the power saver mode, turning off the PC when not in use, using a power strip etc… but still the consumption of power and resulting emissions is a reality.

So How Does one make a Website / Blog Carbon Neutral?

With carbon offsets we get to neutralize the impact we create on our environment. It is a reality that the greenest form of energy is energy we do not use. To be as green as possible pay attention and be prudent in your use of the computer and connected devices.

What are Carbon offsets? How does it work? We all use energy in one form or another and impact our environment leading to climate change. A carbon offset represents a reduction in emissions somewhere else – like a renewable energy or a reforestation project – to balance out the emissions you cannot reduce. Also, carbon offsets are the only way to get your carbon footprint to zero today.

Carbon Fund has a simplified our calculations further by taking into account the number of page views we get monthly. As per their calculations a website with 1500 page views monthly would be Carbon Free for just $9.00 a year! And for a major website with 50,000 monthly visitors it would cost them $300.00 to offset their Carbon foot print.

As per the Carbonfund website their calculated cost per page view is $.0005 cents. This figure takes into account web hosting, network use, as well as the visitors’ computer use. Their assumptions are based on data from several studies published by independent third-party sources.

If you believe in green living and want your Website or Blog to be Carbon Neutral check out CarbonFund.org today.  Always remember the cleanest energy is the one we do not use.

I am proud to say Connect-Green is now Officially a CARBON FREE Blog! Live Green!

Sources –

Carbon Fund

NYtimes article

Global FootPrint Network: Keeping Tabs On Our Consumption

August 21st was EarthOvershoot Day! Wondering what that means? So did I. That is when I found this organization “Global Footprint network”.

So what is the Global footprint? In articles about reducing consumption we have all come across the term Carbon Foot print; when that is taken to a global scale it becomes the Global footprint for all inhabitants of our planet.

Every year, Global Footprint Network calculates nature’s supply in the form of biocapacity, the amount of resources the planet generates, and compares that to human demand: the amount it takes to produce all the living resources we consume and absorb our carbon dioxide emissions. Earth Overshoot Day, a concept devised by U.K.-based new economics foundation, marks the day when demand on ecological services begins to exceed the renewable supply.

This year August 21st is the day on which we exhausted our ecological budget for the year, with 4 months remaining in the year.

How is Earth Overshoot day Calculated?

Earth Overshoot Day shows the day on which our total Ecological Footprint (measured in global hectares) is equal to the biocapacity (also measured in global hectares) that nature can regenerate in that year. For the rest of the year, we are accumulating debt by depleting our natural capital and letting waste accumulate.

[ world biocapacity / world Ecological Footprint ] x 365 = Earth Overshoot Day Day

What is Happening?

As with everything else in the environment being aware and reducing consumption and waste will go a long way in reducing our impact on the environment. Global climate change is one of humanity’s greatest challenges; addressing it is key to our long-term well-being and the continued vitality of our societies.

I had a conversation with my friend about program on NatGeo about Human population explosion and how that could lead to chaos due to inadequacies of resources vs. population… Scary but possible unless Governments world over pay heed to the burgeoning population in its urban centers. In 2008 according to data collected most number of people worldwide were residing in urban areas; their populations were calculated to be around 6.6 Billion and this was estimated to grow by 1.5Billion by 2030! Our role in shaping the Earth is powerful, and the human footprint continues to expand.

What Can Be Done?

The Global Footprint Network aims at creating a world where everyone can live well, within the means of one planet, and it is going to take all of us pulling together toward this common goal.

The scale of our challenge is enormous. Nothing short of a revolution in our economies, societies, energy choices and lifestyles is required.

At Global Footprint Network our programs are designed to influence decision makers at all levels of society and to create a critical mass of powerful institutions using the Footprint to put an end to ecological overshoot and get our economies back into balance.
Check out this video on the importance of ecological footprints

Check out your Ecological Footprint here very interesting almost like an FB game! This is my Ecological Footprint! 4.7 planets is everyone lived like me!!

And you come away with the knowledge of what each of your actions cost.

Keep in mind we are already accruing a debt this year, be conscious of your consumption.

Live Green!

Sources:

Global Footprint Network

World Governments Fail to Deliver on Biodiversity Promises

Suggested Reading from Amazon:

Our Ecological Footprint: Reducing Human Impact on the Earth (New Catalyst Bioregional Series) (Paperback)

Sharing Nature’s Interest : Ecological Footprints as an Indicator of Sustainability

How Green Will the Fifa World Cup Be?

Fifa world cup SA Logo

In 3 days on the 11th of June, the entire world will be descending on South Africa as it hosts the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ for the first time in Africa the poorest of all continents. The event will highlight South Africa in a once-in-a-lifetime way.

Football or Soccer I would say is the most popular game in the world and the game played by most number of people across the world and to many it reaches the heights of religious fervor. Millions herd to watch the matches in stadiums and billions watch it from the comforts of their homes. The good part is that it is a coming together of the world for 30 days to play and celebrate the best players in world football.

There are 32 teams (representing 32 countries from around the world) who will be playing each other and going through 4 rounds until a winning country or the world champion is decided. This is the 19th edition of the world cup which like the Olympics is held once in 4 years. Italy is the defending champions and Spain & Argentina are considered favorites.

Basic things which would affect the Carbon Footprint:

In South Africa the matches are spread over 9 far flung cities; Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg, Port Elizabeth, Bloemfontein, Nelspruit, Polokwane, Rustenburg and Tshwane in Pretoria. The distances to be travelled, the sheer number of visitors, volunteers, organizers, players & support staff etc and of course the brand new stadiums! Simple geography will also be one of the main reasons: foreign visitors will travel a total of 7.1 million kilometers (4.4 million miles) to cheer their teams at the southern tip of Africa, their planes emitting tons of carbon.

The renewal/ new construction of stadiums have a large Carbon footprint resulting from the use of virgin cement. The cement industry is one of the main producers of CO2. For every ton of cement there is one ton of carbon produced.

All these add to the carbon footprint of an event of this magnitude. So what is being done? How Green will the World Cup be?

What is being done to lessen impact?

Natural ventilation, rain water capture, energy efficiency: the new stadiums built for Africa’s first World Cup incorporate top-notch environmental standards. But the reality is carbon offsets albeit good are something which does not make an event carbon-neutral, Carbon produced is carbon produced.

The Green Goal program is aimed at identifying potential impacts, avoid or minimize the impacts where possible and compensate or offset unavoidable adverse impacts.

The cities of Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban have also planted thousands of trees to capture the carbon dioxide blamed for global warming. Durban is the most ambitious of the nine host cities, planning to compensate for local carbon emissions by producing electricity from hydraulic turbines or biogas emitted by landfills.

Other environmental impacts associated with major football events results from activities of football fans can manifest themselves in following ways:

  1. Increase in the use of water;
  2. Increase in the use of energy (liquid fuel and electricity [majority of SA energy is coal generated]);
  3. Increased production of waste; and
  4. Increase in pollution – air, water and land.

For the first time in the history of the World Cup Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium in Port Elizabeth will have all its energy from renewable sources: i.e. Wind energy; courtesy the 1.8MW turbines installed by Vestas. The turbine belongs to Electrawinds, a Belgian renewable energy company whose operating assets up to now have all been in Europe. Managing director Luc Desender says “it is my personal dream to reserve the first green electricity of Electrawinds in South Africa for the 2010 football world championship.”

Under the system of “carbon credits”, these projects will take two and a half years to offset the emissions caused by hosting the tournament in Durban, said Nicci Diederichs, head of the city’s green programs.

Though unhappy with what is being done, some Green activists look at the inadvertent improvements as the positives steps towards a greener future. They believe one of the most positive legacies will probably come about inadvertently in the form of improved public transport and the bus-rapid-transport system specifically. They believe it will offset the greenhouse gas emissions by at least 50%.

Zakumi Mascot of the world cup

 Some Interesting facts and predictions about the 19th World Cup:

  • An estimate puts the expected numbers of visitors for the world cup at 10 million plus!
  • According to the Cape Argus newspaper, 2000 planes will fly over South Africa every day, for the whole of the 2010 World Cup.
  • South Africa’s Water and Environmental Affairs Minister Buyelwa Sonjica warned Reuters in 2009 that the 2010 World Cup “will have the largest carbon footprint of any major event with a goal to be climate neutral.
  • The 19th World Cup’s footprint will be six times the carbon footprint of the 2006 FIFA World Cup hosted in Germany and almost twice that of the Beijing Olympics!!
  • Norway and South Africa have joined hands in a partnership that aims to make the 2010 FIFA World Cup—the first one organized on African soil—kind to the environment through the reduction of CO2 emissions.
  • The South African government has invested an estimated $12 billion during the past four years in infrastructure for the Cup.  Critics say the money could have been better spent alleviating poverty.

From June 11th to July 11th it will be football fever worldwide, and I believe if each fan takes one step to help offsetting the carbon footprint of their favorite event our world will be better off.

  • Plant a Tree!
  • Walk/ Bicycle / Carpool / Use public transport to get to work.
  • After work and after watching the world cup match turn off power strips and lights.
  • Increase your plant consumption, buy local produce.
  • Check out this link for more Green tips 🙂

Live Green! Green is a lifestyle for a better tomorrow.

Follow the World cup 2010 here

Watch the World cup live online here 

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