Free «Carbon Foot Print» Essay

Carbon Foot Print

Introduction

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Carbon foot print is defined as carbon emissions caused by a product, person, organization or an event to the air. It originates from human activity i.e. fuel burned and used to produce goods that are far away from the consumer. Rees &Wackernagel (1990) developed the concept of carbon footprint after an ecological footprint forum. Carbon foot print is due to behaviors, lifestyle influence and choices that influence the amount of Carbon dioxide released to the air which affects climate change.

A carbon footprint helps to establish the quantity of CO2 released through the daily activities and through the choices we make every day. Green house gases can be exposed through, land clearance, production and consumption of food, manufactured goods, roads, buildings, services and transport. Carbon foot print can be measured by conducting a GHG emission assessment (Tomain 2011p.279). When a size of carbon foot print is known, a framework of reducing the emission can be established. There are several strategies that can be used to reduce emissions. Consumption strategies, capturing carbon, better manufacturing processes, product management and other technological developments can be used to reduce the carbon emissions to the atmosphere.                                                                                                                                                

Mitigating Carbon Footprints

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When mitigating the carbon footprints, development of alternative projects, such as wind or solar energy or reforestation, represents a way of decreasing carbon footprint. This  is referred to as Carbon offsetting. Economic output, population, energy, and carbon intensity of the economy are some of the influences on carbon foot prints. They form the main targets of individuals and businesses to reduce carbon footprints. Scholars give the most effective way to reduce a carbon footprint by decreasing the energy needed for production and the reduction of overdependence on carbon emitting fuels.

Chevrolet  founded in Detroit in 1911 celebrates a global automotive brand with annual sales of close to 4.25 million vehicles in 140 countries. Chevrolet offers consumers fuel-efficient, reliable and safe vehicles of  high quality, spirited performance and value. In Detroit, Chevrolet has done extraordinary effort to support 17 projects in America that range from biomass turbines as part of its effort to spend up to $50 million in reducing carbon (Tukker & Jansen, 2006). The Chevrolet committed to preventing up to 8 million metric tons of carbon emissions to the atmosphere for 5 years.

Dr. Michio Kaku, theoretical physicist noted that reducing carbon dioxide emissions is one of the greatest responsibilities today. Through energy savings, renewable energy and conservation, Chevrolet has initiated contracts to help ssupport programs that will prevent greenhouse gas emissions in the coming years. The Metrolina Greenhouse project in Huntersville, N.C replaced natural gas with renewable biomass (waste wood)  to heat greenhouses that grow gardening plants (Wiedmann, Barrett & Lenzen, 2007 p.39).           

Another programme is Crow Lake Wind Farm in Mitchell, S.D. A.  This is a 108-turbine wind farm with community owned turbines that are seven in total. They provide residents and rural farmers with locally generated power. Pipeline pumping stations of gas in Culbertson, Garvin. Minn and Mont one Waste heat recovery centre initiated to curb the carbon dioxide emissions. Chevrolet has endeavored to replant trees in forests to replace those destroyed by fire. This is implemented through partnership with San Juan National Forest in Colorado, and the National Forest Foundation.

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Honda and Toyota have also joined the war against carbon emissions by producing fuel efficient vehicles (Munksgaard & Norris et al., 2004 p.660). The four-door sedans are examples of vehicles that are popular for fleets and individuals. The sedans provide the right amount of space for 4 to 5 passengers leaving enough space for cargo. The Toyota Prius, Honda civic Hybrid, Honda Insight and Ford Fusion Hybrid are among the sedans that have the lowest greenhouse gas emissions. They also have the best fuel usage and can achieve freeway speeds. These cars give fleets tax breaks and have significant funding opportunities. So greenhouse gas emissions is a priority with millions of conscientious consumers and fleet managers today.

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