How Affluent is Your Lifestyle?
by Carol Culver De Leo
Each and every one of us has our own unique carbon footprint based on our lifestyle choices. The way we choose to live our lives has an impact on our environment and on each other.
For some of us our footprint is smaller due to life circumstances. A poor family with little income will have a smaller impact than those of us who have built up wealth and can afford the luxury of certain comforts.
Where do you fall in the spectrum of affluent lifestyle? Take our fun, non-scientific quiz to see where you rate! Choose the description that fits you best and total the numbers for your score.
A Place to Call Home
Have you ever heard the saying “A man’s home is his castle”? Whether you literally live in a castle, or in a one room hut with a dirt floor, your home is your place of security and shelter. Which best describes your home?
- 1 point – A small one room hut with no electric or running water
- 2 points – A small home with electric and running water
- 3 points – A large home with electric and running water
- 4 points – A massive home with electric and running water
Our food choices have a big impact on our environment. What is your preferred diet?
- 1 point – Vegan
- 2 points – Vegetarian
- 3 points – Fruit and Vegetables, Dairy, Chicken and Fish
- 4 points Fruit and Vegetables, Dairy, Chicken, Fish and Pork
- 5 points Fruit and Vegetables, Dairy, Chicken, Fish, Pork and Beef
Electronic gadgets help us in our business, our communication, and can provide hours of entertainment. But they do add to our carbon footprint. Give yourself 1 point for each gadget you own.
- Digital Camera
- Video Game Console
Most people enjoy going for walks, taking a hike, riding a bicycle, but that is not necessarily their main form of transportation. What is your most predominant form of transportation?
- 0 Points – Walking
- 1 Points – Bicycle
- 2 Points – Motorcycle
- 2 Points – Public Transit
- 2 Points – Ride Service
- 2 Points – Hybrid Car
- 3 Points – Fuel efficient vehicle
- 4 Points – Gas Guzzler
- 5 Points – Luxury car
Your shopping habits can have a big impact on the environment in ways you have probably never thought of. Do you know how packaged foods are required to list the ingredients? Wouldn’t it be interesting if an item was required to list the trail of environmental impacts from the resources used in the manufacturing, transportation, and marketing of that product?
We all have different spending habits. Some of us love to shop, others only do so when they absolutely have to. And then some of us may not have a disposable income that allows us to splurge. Choose the description that matches your style the closest.
- 1 Point – I only buy necessities, I shop with a list and stick to it
- 2 Points – I buy what I need, and do a little impulse buying
- 3 Points – I keep up with current trends in clothes, electronics
- 4 Points – I am a shopaholic and get pleasure from buying new things whether I need them or not
Air travel is a big contributor to your footprint. How often do you take to the skies?
- 0 Points – I never fly
- 1 point – I take a domestic flight once a year
- 2 Points – I fly internationally once a year
- 4 Points – I am a frequent business flyer
- 4 Points – I travel for pleasure around the world
- 5 Points I own my own jet and travel for both business and pleasure
Life of Luxury
Give yourself 5 points for each luxury item that you own.
- Yacht (or any recreational boat)
- Multiple homes
- Swimming pool/hot tub
- Personal jet
- High end vehicles
- Recreational vehicle
- Air Conditioner/Heating System
0 – 20 Your lifestyle is very basic and your carbon footprint is average
20 – 40 You enjoy a few perks in life that deepens your carbon footprint
40+ You are doing extremely well in life and can afford luxuries that many only dream about. Your chosen lifestyle also has the biggest impact on our environment.
My personal score is 23. While I try to keep my footprint low, and follow the basic etiquette of recycling what I can, I know some of my personal habits and lifestyle are leaving a bigger imprint than I want. To compensate, I support a project that reduces carbon with a small monthly donation. There are many Carbon Removal programs to choose from.
My personal choice is A Little Training Goes a Long Way. I know how effective this program is firsthand, and it makes me feel good to know that I am not only compensating for my lifestyle choices, but I am also contributing to improve lives that do not have as much as I do, and that is a good feeling.
For those of you who are 40+, your hard work allows you to choose a comfortable and pleasurable lifestyle, congratulations! Perhaps it is time to begin your own personal collection of Carbon Credits to compensate for your deeper footprint. There is no need to feel guilt about what you are able to afford. Just add carbon credits to your portfolio of lifestyle choices! Contact Jason at Biochar Life to begin a portfolio today. I recently heard about one gentleman who has been collecting carbon credits for years now, and is up to 13 Million carbon credits! Now that is impressive!
What the future holds
As we work towards a more equitable and sustainable future to replace our dependency on fossil fuels lifestyle choices may have a smaller impact. Air travel may eventually be less of a contributor to our carbon problem. Test flights are being successfully conducted using vegetable oil instead of jet fuel! Imagine what a difference that will make!
There are so many benefits to a world run on clean, sustainable energy, whether it be solar, wind, or vegetable cooking oil!!
We all should enjoy the basics of life – healthy food, clean air, clean water, a source of energy, and the option to choose how we live.
Thank you for taking our quiz. You may learn more about your personal impact particularly on your fashion habits, the results may surprise you!
Fashion Footprint Calculator
How An Effective Water Management Strategy Can Save The Environment
By Kat Sarmiento
Over 70% of the Earth’s surface is covered with water. Knowing this, it may seem hard to imagine that we’d ever have to conserve and manage it. However, we also need to consider other statistics:
- Fresh water comprises only 3% of the Earth’s overall water
- Around 0.5% is clean enough to drink — with the other 2.5% either stuck in ice caps, glaciers, and soil or are too polluted to drink
- That leaves 97% of the water on the planet to be salt water — not at all suitable for drinking
This is according to data collected by the U.S. Department of Interior’s Bureau of Reclamation.
With the growing population and the obvious overuse of resources, water management has become more important than ever. Not only can it help preserve the water supplies on the planet but it can also help us determine how future irrigation will look like for us.
If you’re interested to learn more about how an efficient water management strategy can save the environment, you’ve come to the right place for answer.
Reduces effects of water shortages and droughts.
Two things happen after we use water:
First, they can evaporate into the atmosphere. Or second, they can drain into the sewers. Regardless of what happens, however, we can still reuse the water at the end of every cycle.
This makes it easier for people to believe that water is an unlimited resource. BUt that isn’t necessarily the case.
Although water eventually comes back to Earth through the water cycle, the quality and quantity of this water is not often the same. Neither is it returned specifically to the same place it was taken from.
By practicing sustainability and controlling our water consumption, we can protect ourselves better from possible droughts and shortages.
Improves crop growth and food production.
Research shows that around 70% of the world’s freshwater resources are used in agriculture. Farmers use water to grow crops and trees. Meanwhile, others use water to keep livestock hydrated. In other words, water is one of the most important elements of efficient and ethical food production.
Without proper water management, shortages and droughts are more likely to happen. When they do, there would be less food and products available for everyone. World hunger will increase and diseases would be more rampant than ever before.
Water management can prevent all that from happening. Through proper allocation of resources, farmers can grow healthier crops and maintain a stabler stream of supplies for communities.
While water is the source of all life it can also be the destruction of it, especially without the right management technique in place. Besides what we’ve mentioned in the previous sections, another great thing about effective water management is that it boosts safety.
Dams, dikes, barriers, and levees are a few examples of water management in walls that increase an area’s safety. On top of stopping floods from affecting the land, these water management methods can also serve as reservoirs in case of shortages or droughts.
Reducing our water consumption helps preserve the environment. The less water we consume, the less energy is required to gather and deliver these resources to our homes, offices, and communities.
Decreases water prices.
The less there is of a precious resource, the higher their prices typically become. Water is one of the most important resources on Earth. In fact, without it all life on the planet would have very little chance of surviving.
There are several factors that can increase the costs of water. Besides every day consumption, other things that can drive up water costs are:
- Sewer fees
- Compliance fees
- Water treatment costs
- Manufacturing costs
By reducing your water consumption, you also reduce the fees that you pay for in the end. Conserving water and going plastic free can also decrease your carbon footprint — not to mention electricity bill.
This is because you won’t be using all the motors and pumps that you normally use to heat, cool, and move water.
Frees up water for recreational activities.
Swimming pools, golf courses, and spas are just a few examples recreational establishments that require large amounts of water. However, those aren’t the only activities that need freshwater. For instance, gardening and watering your lawns are two other extracurriculars that need clean water. By reducing water consumption, you can free up a lot of resources to use on other things that add value to both your life and the environment.
No matter what our lifestyle, we can all contribute to reducing carbon. Whether we choose a simple lifestyle and conserve, or live a big life and contribute to enable others to remove excess carbon, if we do not do it who will?
Biochar as a soil amendment helps retain water in the soil for plants to thrive, especially helpful in drought years.