Citizen Challenge #1: How big is your carbon footprint?

How many Earths does it take to meet your needs?

The planet’s natural resources aren’t infinite. In 1987, scientists calculated the first Earth Overshoot Day — the day by which we will have taken from nature more than the Earth can restore in a year. This puts the sustainability of our lifestyle choices into perspective. Our Earth Overshoot Day for 2017 fell on August 2nd. As our global population grows, we put more and more ecological stress on the planet, not only with overfishing or the cutting down of forests, but through the amount of carbon dioxide we release into the atmosphere.A carbon footprint can be defined as the total amount of greenhouse gases produced to directly and indirectly support human activities. Everything we do in our day-to-day lives influences our carbon footprint, from how we commute and get around to how we take care of household chores, such as doing the dishes and laundry. Even the food that you consume impacts your individual carbon footprint.

Currently, if everyone on the planet lived as Canadians do, it would take 4.7 Earths to meet their demands.

For the first citizen challenge of the Classroom Energy Diet Challenge, we are asking Canadians to calculate their own carbon footprint and share what they can do to decrease it! Follow these steps to get started:

  1. Calculate your carbon footprint
    Use one of these tools to learn about your impact on the planet:
    Global Footprint Calculator
    Carbon Footprint Calculator
    Zero Footprint Youth Calculator

  2. Make a pledge to reduce it
    How many Earths does it take to sustain your daily needs? What changes can you make to reduce this number?

  3.        Tell us how!
           Share your ideas with us on social media using the hashtag #thinkcreatedo!

As the global population continues to grow and our natural resources are being depleted, we all need to make changes in our lives to achieve a sustainable future!