How to Reduce your Carbon Footprint at IH

What is your Carbon Footprint?

Image Credit: CC by  Carbon Footprint/ Flickr

Image Credit: CC by Carbon Footprint/ Flickr

Your carbon footprint is the total of all emissions of CO2 (carbon dioxide), which you were created by your activities during a given time-period. You can calculate your carbon footprint on these useful tools designed by or by the US Environment Protection Agency. Offsetting our unavoidable CO2 emissions is a practical and immediate way to take ownership of our personal contribution to climate change.

Since we are an international audience, check out this article from the Guardian to see how much CO2 emissions our home countries produce.


How can we reduce our Carbon Footprint?

We put together seven practical ideas for IH Residents on how we can do our part at reducing Carbon Emissions. To learn more about the University of London sustainability efforts, look at this presentation by John Bailey, the Sustainability Officer for the University of London. John would be happy to answer any questions you may have.

1.      Bring your own bags and buy in bulk when possible to reduce packaging. It’s great that we have Waitrose, Sainsbury’s and Tesco within walking distance from the hall. Make sure you carry a cloth bag with you or opt to not use a plastic bag if you are only buying a few things.

2.      Reduce your consumption of bottled water and other packaged drinks. In general, driving up demand for plastic means doing the same for fossil fuels. Plus, plastic has several negative impacts on the environment. Thankfully, all the water that comes out of the cold water taps at IH are completely drinkable you can also get filtered water down at the Dining Hall. However, if you prefer, a Brita Filter is a good investment.

3.      Eat less meat, and opt for sustainable sources when it comes to what you do purchase. By one estimate, consuming a pound of beef gives off more carbon than burning a gallon of gasoline. There are several vegetarian options available in the Dining Hall.

4.      Turn off the appliances which are not in use in your room. This especially applies to switching off devices when you are not in your room. Remember to Reduce the Juice.

5.      Take a shorter shower. Ever considered taking a shorter shower? Here are some ideas to help you keep your shower to under six-minutes.

6.      Recycle. As students, naturally, we use a large amount of paper as well as plastic, glass, etc. The EPA estimates that recycling glass, aluminum, plastic, and paper could save 582 pounds of CO2 per year, equivalent to more than 600 miles of driving. There are recycling areas on each floor in the hall. Contact Hall Management – for more information.

7.      In addition to the awesome things to do, one of the best things about living in central London is that you can walk to most places. As awesome as ride-sharing apps can be, consider walking it or using a Santander bike as often as you can.

Looking for more ideas? Click here