Reduce your carbon footprints

We have been emitting too much of carbon dioxide that global warming has been felt everywhere in the world already. Terry Root, a senior fellow with Stanford University's Institute for International Studies (IIS) and lead author of the Jan. 2 Nature study, said that the earth has warmed by an average of 1 degree F (0.6 C) over the past 100 years. She added that far-reaching effects will be felt by species and ecosystems by 2100, when temperatures could increase as much as 11 F (6 C). The global average sea level has risen, the heat in the ocean has increased as well and snow cover and ice extent have decreased. Island nations and low-lying ones like some areas in the Philippines (including Iloilo City) would be affected. Root added that the effect of global warming, she said, has disrupted the connectedness among the species, which could lead to numerous extinctions.

Humans will also suffer more heat-related illnesses as well as pulmonary problems. A not so healthy population is not good for national security as well. I think “disruption of connectedness” does not only lead to a specie's extinction but also to the global economy as well. After Frank and Ondoy, every rich person and the ordinary Juan feels the economic effects of such disconnectedness.

Melvin Purzuelo, convenor of Responsible Ilonggos for Sustainable Energy (RISE), once said that there is an effort to reduce carbon dioxide emission in the atmosphere by 450 points centigrade by the year 2015 in order to avert a catastrophic event like another typhoon Frank, one that's three times worse. He said that as of this year, 385 points centigrade of carbon dioxide had been released in the atmosphere already. The figure in itself shows us the intensity of the harm that we are inflicting on ourselves by the lifestyle that we are having. He urged Ilonggos to help in any way they can, like the proper segregation of our wastes and the return to organic sustainable agriculture. It was from him that I found out that agriculture contributes as much as 49 percent (use of pesticides) and garbage disposal, 9 percent, in the emission of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

A year ago, a fellow journalist talked to me about carbon footprints. As he explained it to me, I realized how important monitoring the carbon footprints that you put on this earth is important.
Recycling is one effort in reducing you and your family's carbon footprint. At home, my mother uses an 'alat' when she goes to the market. My partner and I, on the other hand, recycle whatever plastic we have by bringing it to the market instead of having the vendor provide us with a new one. Soon, we are going to invest on an 'alat' as well because the supply of plastic at home is running out after being re-used several times. SM Supermalls' project of “Bring Your Own Bag” every Wednesday is laudable.

During Wednesdays, you see consumers bringing home their groceries in non-SM plastic bags or paper bags. It would be nice if every business establishment would gradually implement this.

Another way to cut your carbon footprint is in the choice of transportation. Now, I only take the taxi if I missed the last jeepney trip. Taking a jeepney is something I insist on because taking a taxi or having a car increases your carbon footprints.

Another way is to purchase items that are organic or plant-based. Eating vegetables more than meat also reduces your carbon footprint if you take into consideration the processing of such food before it goes to your mouth. You see, food processing emits carbon dioxide as well.

The amount of carbon footprints we have is the amount of contribution we have on the preservation or extinction of our planet.

We all leave (carbon) footprints, let's try to reduce ours.

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