What You Can Do - Individual Solutions for Curbing GHG Emissions

Get Informed

Scientists agree that the burning of fossil fuels is causing global warming. Since these fuels are burned for energy, and everyone uses energy, everyone can help stop global warming just by using less energy. Think about the things you do each day that use energy. The lights in your house use electricity. The TV and computer use electricity. The washing machine, dishwasher and dryer all use gas or electricity. Every time you ride in your car, it uses gasoline. There are many actions we can take in our daily lives to combat global climate change. Read about the different ways you can help in the following sections.

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Let Your Voice be Heard

In addition to the actions you can take in your home and on the road, engaging in public decision-making is an important way to combat global climate change. Every day, on the local, state, and national levels, decisions are being made that can have a positive effect on combating climate change. Energy production and efficiency standards are just a couple of the topics that are often open for public input. Learn what your local and national representatives are doing about global warming and let them know the issue is important to you.

Across the country, states and regions are adopting policies to address climate change. On the national front, more than 195 bills that deal with energy or climate issues were introduced in the 2007-2008 Congress. One of the most important actions you can take to fight global climate change is to become educated about what your local, state, and national representatives are doing about it. Then, contact your representatives to let them know how important global climate change is to you. You can contact your national legislators at the House of Representatives and the Senate.

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Make Personal Commitments

Everyone shares responsibility for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Through normal, everyday activities, the average American produces over 22 tons of CO2 a year – nearly 4 times the world average. Almost every activity in modern society relies on energy produced from fossil fuels, which represent the largest source of human-caused emissions. It is useful to understand how certain behaviors and lifestyle choices influence the amount of CO2 being released so that appropriate steps and actions can be taken. Significant reductions can often be made through simple, cost-saving measures in and around your home.

The EPA’s online emissions calculator is a good resource for learning more about which activities in your life are responsible for releasing CO2. Most emissions are associated with heating and cooling, lighting and appliance use, and driving and flying. But when added together, other smaller sources can also be significant. Your refrigerator alone is responsible for 8% of typical home-based energy use.

Follow the links below to view basic tips that will help you reduce your energy use, cut down on your CO2 emissions, and save you money.

Reduce Your Carbon Footprint:

Additional Resources