9 Ideas to Start Reducing Your Carbon Footprint

The global carbon footprint per person is centered around three sources: food, home and transport.

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The global carbon footprint per person is centered around three sources: food, home and transport. We can also act by minimizing waste. Reducing your carbon footprint in these areas can be challenging, but Basin residents have shared some ways they are taking action locally, can you follow their lead?

Food

1. Growing food: For example, Greg is planting fruit, nut and hardwood trees on his farm. Jetta is growing greens and makes homemade dog food. Seek out information on what to plant, how to improve the efficiency of your garden, regenerative agriculture practices or planting for carbon sequestration.

2. When buying food, choose local: Check out the Farmers market in your community, the Central Kootenay Farm and Food Guide, Columbia Valley Farm and Food Guide, and other resources to shop local. Like Laura, consider preserving fruits and veggies from your garden and local producers in the off-season.

Transport

3. Driving less, carpooling and making trips that complete multiple chores or sharing a car: For example, Nikki’s family of four will be biking, walking, using public transport, and Kootenay car share if needed. They have winter tires, good rain gear and panniers for their bikes and use them as much as possible. Check out Kootenay Car Share and carpooling sites in your community.

4. When considering a new vehicle, consider one that is more fuel efficient: For example, Darci went from 3 cars and 1 motorbike to 1 car and 5 bicycles!

Home

5. Adjusting your energy use at home: Consider where you can turn off lights, reduce use of appliances and read other suggestions here.

6. Considering what retrofits to your home could reduce energy consumption and save you money in the long term: For example, Tim upgraded his yard with water-efficient underground sprinklers and drip irrigation so he could minimize water use. Huguette installed solar panels, Janeen installed an efficient furnace and heat pump, and Nicole increased the insulation in their home.

Waste

7. Buying less: Reducing consumption is key to minimizing waste. People in the Basin are continually inspired by their neighbours and friends to reduce their consumption and are purchasing products with minimal packaging.

8. Recycling and Composting: Rachel uses glass containers, reusable food wraps and recycles where possible. Others are working to compost organic waste and divert it from the landfill.

9. Repurposing: People in living in the Basin are inspired by their friends and families ability to thrift second hand items instead of buying new. Robyn upcycles old and used clothing to extend their life and Dean has built rain catchment system for his house by upcycling a couple of barrels.

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