What is a Carbon Footprint?

A carbon footprint is a measure of the impact our activities have on the environment, and in particular climate change. It relates to the amount of greenhouse gasses produced in our day-to-day lives through burning fossil fuels for electricity, heating, hot water in the bathroom and transportation etc.

The carbon footprint is a measure of the greenhouse gasses we individually produce and has units of tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent.

 

How is a Carbon Footprint made up?

A carbon footprint is made up of two parts, the primary footprint and the secondary footprint.

1. The primary footprint is a measure of our direct emissions of CO2 from the burning of fossil fuels including domestic energy consumption to create hot water for instance. We have direct control of these.

2. The secondary footprint is a measure of the indirect CO2 emissions from the whole lifecycle of products we use - those associated with thier manufacture and eventful breakdown.