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Posted by Lynsey Denman

We all understand the phrase ‘climate change’ but ask someone what their carbon footprint is, and they probably won’t know the answer. In fact, they may not be totally certain what you’re asking. So, what is a carbon footprint? Simply put, it is the measure of how much greenhouse gas is needed – either directly or indirectly – for human activities. Due to the multitude of factors involved in measuring a carbon footprint, it is merely an estimate. It can be used in relation to a single person, a group, an event or even a product. 

Causes

A carbon footprint reflects the amount of methane and carbon dioxide produced for human activities. The main causes of this are cement production, deforestation and burning fossil fuels. Of these, the largest source of carbon dioxide emissions comes from fossil fuel use. This is because almost the carbon in fossil fuels is turned into carbon dioxide when it combusts. The transportation industry is the second biggest source of these carbon dioxide emissions – primarily from cars on the road. Road transport is responsible for a whopping 72% of the industry’s carbon dioxide.  

Impact of not reducing the carbon footprint

The impact of everyone’s carbon footprint is terrifying. Together, we are all contributing to climate change. In terms of social responsibility, businesses should try and keep their carbon footprint as small as possible. This is because a business produces a much larger carbon footprint than individuals, so by reducing its emissions it can have a much greater impact on climate change.  

Here are some ways that a business can reduce its carbon footprint:

  • Use fuel-efficient vehicles. For companies in the transportation industry, the accumulative effect of reducing fuel use across every vehicle can be huge. This can be done by following fuel saving tips or by driving more fuel-efficient cars. From a business perspective, this will also have financial benefits, as cutting fuel use means cutting fuel costs. In short, using less fuel is a great way to reduce the size of a carbon footprint and also reduce outgoing costs. 
  • Plan ahead and combine trips. By sending drivers on a more circular route, fuel use can be reduced. Avoiding traffic jams is also a great way to reduce fuel consumption. 
  • Maintain heating equipment. It is important to make sure your workforce isn’t too hot or too cold to do their job properly. However, poorly maintained or damaged heating equipment can increase fuel use by up to 10%. 
  • Recycle. Install recycling bins in the office, and make them easily accessible so people don’t find it a chore to use them. For companies who print a lot of paper, this can have a great impact on their carbon footprint. 
  • Offset carbon use. Sometimes, burning fossil fuels and creating carbon dioxide is simply unavoidable from a business perspective. Instead of reducing your carbon footprint, offset the size of it by investing in companies that help tackle carbon emissions. Find a company that plants sustainably managed trees and give it your support. 
     
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Lynsey Denman

I have been with Movolytics since the beginning of the company. My job is the customer experience leader which means that I get to speak to a wide range of customers ensuring that everyone has a smooth customer journey while also managing the top accounts. In my spare time I like going for a run, taking my dog out and a good bottomless brunch.