Have you ever wondered how your current lifestyle choices impact the environment? Maybe you’re curious how your daily lifestyle affects your carbon footprint or ecological impact? Or maybe you already have an inkling how your habits affect the earth, but you’re wondering what changes would make the most impact? Read on to learn more about resources that can give you the answers you’re looking for.
Ecological Footprint Calculator
This online quiz walks you through your daily lifestyle choices to determine your individual impact on the earth. First, the quiz asks you questions about your eating habits – like whether you eat meat (how much and what kinds), and how much of your food is unprocessed and locally sourced. Then you’re asked about your home – what kind of building you live in, what it’s made of, how many people you live with, its size, energy use, and how much trash you create. Next, it’s on to transportation – the quiz asks what kind of vehicles you use, how far you travel, and how fuel-efficient your vehicles are, as well as things like whether you carpool or use public transportation, and how much you travel by airplane.
When you get your results, the quiz tells you how many earths we’d need if everyone lived your exact lifestyle. If you want more information, you can keep clicking to see your personal ecological footprint (basically, how much land is needed to grow things to support your lifestyle), as well as your carbon footprint. The website also has some interesting comparison data you can explore which shows ecological footprints for over 200 countries, published by the Global Footprint Network. On the last step of the quiz, you can also click through resources on how to make a difference and diminish your own footprint, whether through city planning and policies, changing your energy use, switching up your eating habits, learning about family planning, or nurturing the earth overall.
What Now? – Offsetting your Ecological Impact with Project Wren
Project Wren aims to make offsetting carbon footprints more accessible to individuals, not just big businesses. The process is simple – take the quiz to calculate your current carbon footprint, then sign up for a subscription service that lets you easily contribute a monthly amount to offset your impact. Project Wren works with UC Berkeley’s Cool Climate Project and the World Bank to calculate carbon footprints and their needed offset amounts.
Offsetting your ecological impact
After taking the quiz, you then get to choose which ecological impact offset projects to support, which range from planting and protecting forests to regenerative agriculture projects that sequester carbon or prevent methane emissions. Once you select your offset project to support and start contributing, Wren will keep you updated with the project’s progress and data – you won’t have to worry where your money is going, since the whole process is completely transparent. And you can choose how much to contribute – on average, it costs about $23 dollars a month for a Wren user to completely offset their footprint, but you can contribute more or less depending on your financial needs.