What’s your carbon footprint?

Photo Credit: www.greenbydesign.com

In the sustainability world, we are always using big words and umbrella terms like carbon footprint.  We know a higher carbon footprint rating is bad for the environment and living in southern California more or less puts us in that category. 

But it seems to me, that I have a relatively conservative lifestyle in terms of being eco-friendly.  But what is it that makes my carbon footprint so important?  And more importantly, what can I do to decrease it?

To find out just how high my carbon footprint is, I went to the Earth Day Network Web site to take the Footprint quiz

The quiz will show you how many planets it takes to support your everyday lifestyle in five minutes. It’s pretty entertaining too.  You create a Sims-like character and then answer the questions in a video game setting.  I considered myself an eco-friendly person so I was a bit surprised by the horrible results I got – definitely a wake-up call.

Here are my results.

1.  We would need 4.9 Planet Earths to provide enough resources if everyone lived like me.

2.  My ecological footprint break down is as follows: goods (11%), mobility (15%), food (16%), Shelter (17%) and services (40%).

3.  To support my lifestyle, it would take 21.9 global acres of the Earth’s productive area.

Even though my eco-grade isn’t as low as I’d like, at least now I know what to work on.  Post your results in the comment box when you take the quiz for comparison.