Thursday, October 9, 2008

Carbon Footprints of Six Everyday Items

Everybody's talking about it. But what exactly is a carbon footprint? And how is it calculated?
Jeffrey Ball, Wall Street Journal, October 6, 2008

What are the carbon footprints of some of the common products we use? How are they calculated? And what surprises do they hold? The Wall Street Journal looked at six everyday items -- cars, shoes, laundry detergent, clothing, milk and beer -- and the numbers that go with them.

The CO2 equivalent emitted by the manufacturing, shipping, storage, and use of the following items:
Car (Prius?) - 97,000 pounds
Timberland's Winter Park Slip On Boot - 121 pounds
Tesco Laundry detergent - 31 pounds
Patagonia Talus jacket - 66 pounds
Aurora Organic Dairy 1.2 gallon milk - 7.2 pounds
Six-pack of Fat Tire Amber Ale - 7 pounds

To help you put it in perspective (from the International Energy Agency):
The US emits the equivalent of about 118 pounds of carbon dioxide per resident every day.
Annually, that's ~20 metric tons per US citizen.
The average US citizen emits about five times as much CO2 compared to citizens of the world at large.

Read the complete story here:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Given that New Beligum Brewing Co. (brewers of Fat Tire) are one of the most sustainable breweries around (on-site power generation and off-site wind power, water efficiency practices, etc), I wonder what the carbon footprint of a more typical six-pack would be?