Wednesday, 20 February 2008

Wednesday 20th February 2008 Happy Birthday 'Low Carbon Lifestyle' blog!!!

Yes, one year on and I've a reasonably detailed record of my daily activities.... just emitting approximately 0.46 tonnes of 'fossil' carbon in the process, according to 'ActOnCO2' the Government's carbon calculator, and the other three I've plugged my info into also suggest a household footprint of between 1.2 tonnes and 1.8 tonnes, of which I have a share... possibly a quarter share or, if we ignore the kids and pretend their emissions are due to us adults, a half of this. I think, though, because I travel more due to my work and interests, that I should claim more than half as 'my' footprint, so mine is a tonne and Gill's just half a tonne. This figure is for heating, power and travel only. It does not take into consideration the footprint of the food we eat or other things we buy or consume (for instance, my new bike took quite a bit of energy and resources to construct and weld and transport to York), nor does it consider the 'negative footprint' of the work that I do to keep stuff out of landfill directly or by educating others..... but all that's much more complicated and would take more recording, measuring and estimating/guestimating.

So today started much like many others, got up soon after 8, saw the kids off to school, got a phone call from Beth my gardening friend saying it was too cold and frosty to do the gardening she wants to do, and as I was going to meet her to give some composting advice, she rang to say, don't come. So I put the laptop on to check messages and wish myself a happy anniversary!

Went to the parenting course and it was a good session today, as we had a talk from and with Tim Waudby who I worked with on York Green Festy last year, although in the end he didn't partcipate for various reasons. However, he did help with publicity. So he told us about various children's activities, then after lunch we made a collage of our 'Utopian vision' of our ideal society. Gill and I created 'Ecotopia' and put on lots of images of health, low consumption patterns, helping each other, charitable causes, wildlife and other lovely things!

I went to Richard's fruit emporium as usual and bought local carrots, broccoli and non-local satsumas, plus two sacks of waste veg/fruit/cardboard for composting.

I got the children plus a friend from school, and we all came home quickly as they were all keen on going up to Archbishop Holgate School for their self defence class. I left them there as Maria was bringing them back. I brought back some sticks to decorate the front garden(!) and did a bit of logpile building, as with this intense cold we're going through the logs quickly.

At 5pm, we had a visit from a joiner who we want to give us a quote for making some cupboard doors for under the stairs, as the current system there is difficult to use, they are supposed to clip off and on, but they don't do this easily.

A nap after tea for an hour then came down and watched some TV and did some computery stuff. Created a Facebook page for Professor Fiddlesticks and eventually worked out how to upload photos.


Anonymous said...

Well done!

Is your footprint in carbon or carbon dioxide?

I have only just realised that 1 tonne of carbon is the equivalent of 3.67 tonnes of carbon dioxide!

Best Wishes

Compost John said...

Hello 'anonymous', this is a good question.
I had to check for the answer, although I was reasonably sure that the measurement is just carbon, but I checked with my CRAG friends and a couple of websites.
One's 'Carbon footprint' is in most cases a measure of the amount of carbon dioxide and other climate change gases such as methane and nitrous oxide expressed as carbon dioxide 'equivalents'. So, if you eat beef, you are responsible for a share of the daily emission of about 600 litres of methane per animal, each molecule of which has a climate change effect some 23 times the power of a molecule of carbon dioxide. And the figure is in tonnes of carbon, as the CO2 has two oxygens sitting with the carbon, and these add to the weight of the molecule (as you say in your post).
So all the calculators measure your CO2 emissions AND, if they are sensitive enough, other climate change gases, and express it in C equivalents... I think anyway.
I hope that if this is wrong, someone will write a post explaining the correct explanation!