The big picture
What is it all about? Why do I need to be concerned about climate change?
The big picture: To limit the effects of climate change, globally we’re aiming to stop the temperature of the Earth going higher than the 1.5C it has already risen.
To achieve this, we need to cut our carbon footprint in half by 2030, and in half again by 2040. These might seem unimaginable or unquantifiable numbers if you’re at the start of your climate journey, but Greener and Cleaner is here to help you break this down and find manageable actions that suit you, your family, your household – and even your workplace if you want!
What can you do?
The only effective way to limit the impact of climate change is to minimise carbon dioxide (CO2) production. As individuals, if we are seriously concerned for the lives of ourselves, our children and our grandchildren, there is much we can do:
Cutting your carbon footprint
Your carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases (including carbon dioxide and methane) that are generated by your actions.
There are some simple and free online calculators that can help you work out what your starting carbon footprint is.
Once you know what your carbon footprint is, you can work to reduce it.
There are simple changes you can make, along with more complex ones. Greener and Cleaner is here to support all the changes you want to make. Browse through our website for ways to get greener and join our dedicated Facebook group Greener & Cleaner Bromley (& Beyond) for informal tips, advice and support from others on their journey to a greener and cleaner life.
If you’d like more help with your carbon footprint you can also book our Carbon Literacy training. A real eye-opener, Carbon Literacy training dramatically opens up the discussion around why it’s so important and what it really means.
Make changes now
Some of the key things you can do include:
- Reduce, reuse, recycle.
- Going plastic free.
- Going car-free or adopting active travel where possible.
- Reducing the number of flights you take.
- Cut down on eating meat – especially red meat. Vegetable diets save money too!
- Growing your own vegetables. Buying locally produced food.
- Consuming fewer manufactured goods and less processed food. Buying new only when necessary. Buying second-hand.
- Spreading the word. Lobby. Protest.
- Limiting family size – having one less child can reduce our carbon impact enormously.
How is it possible to do that? What other changes can I make to live a greener and cleaner life? Find ideas, tips and advice in our get greener section, broken down by areas of your lifestyle and home.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Central to our ethos are the principles of reduce, reuse, recycle.
Above all we need to reduce our consumption and we need to eliminate our reliance on single use plastics. We need to think more about what we can reuse; and we need to improve what can be recycled and what we actually recycle. There are many simple actions you can take to get greener, and we’re here to help you find what works best for you. We are a no-judgement zone.
Big picture concepts
We know first-hand that eco-anxiety and worrying about where to start can be overwhelming. Throughout this section of the website we hope to guide you on your greener and cleaner journey; whether you are just starting out, looking for specific tips or just unsure where to go next.
Two of the most important considerations when working to live a greener lifestyle are understanding and reducing your carbon footprint, and adopting a reduce, reuse, recycle approach to your lifestyle choices.
Carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) are present in our atmosphere in tiny proportions, yet they have a hugely disproportionate influence on our climate.
CO1 and CH4 are major greenhouse gases that absorb heat, radiated from the earth’s surface, as energy. They act like a blanket; without their presence the earth would freeze over, but as their concentration increases it will overheat.
For millions of years the temperature of the earth has increased and decreased with the concentration of CO2. In the million years prior to the industrial revolution, the earth dipped in and out of ice ages as CO2 ranged from 180-280ppm (parts per million); producing a temperature rise and fall of about 3C. Of course, this is a simplified overview – many other factors have (lesser) influence as well.
The industrial revolution and human consumption
The industrial revolution introduced the burning of fossil fuel – coal, oil, natural gas and their by-products petrol (gasoline), diesel, kerosene, and LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) – all producing CO2 in huge amounts.
In the last 60 years, human consumption of fossil fuels has increased CO2 in our atmosphere by 100ppm; 500 times faster than at any previous time in earth’s history, and much too fast for the earth to achieve balance. We are on course to reach a 200ppm increase, to over 500ppm, by 2050 – last seen in the Miocene era when the earth was 4-6C warmer. Read more here.
Every 1C increase in sea temperature increases storm energy by 7% and increases water vapour in our atmosphere. Higher wind speeds and higher rainfall are increasing storm damage and inland flooding. Higher sea levels from melting ice caps will flood coastal areas more frequently, displacing inhabitants.
Do you speak carbon?
A real eye-opener, Carbon Literacy training dramatically opens up the discussion around why it’s so important and what it really means. Greener and Cleaner runs Carbon Literacy training for both individuals and businesses or charities. Contact us to find out more.