Global Carbon Council

Carbon Footprint


Carbon Footprint


Some areas of the world produce more CO2, or less, than other parts of the globe. 7 And some individuals enable more or less CO2 emissions than other individuals. The term used to describe different sizes of CO2 emission is carbon footprint. A bigger footprint means that an entity is responsible for the generation of a lot of CO2 emission, while a smaller footprint means less CO2 - which is better.

A carbon footprint measures the total GHG emissions caused directly and indirectly by a person, organisation, event or product. Businesses, industries, villages, nations etc all have their own carbon footprints. Our carbon footprint is the sum of all CO2 emissions that are produced by our activities such as driving, shopping, washing, cooking and eating, drinking, using devices, heating or cooling your house, and other activities during a given period.


Human activity since the Industrial Revolution has increased the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. NASA scientists reported in November 2015 that levels of CO2 generated by human activity continue to increase. By burning fossil fuels, we are releasing an estimated 34.8 billion tonnes of CO2 per year. Currently, about half of this is staying in the atmosphere, not absorbed by plants and the oceans, and so contributes increasingly to the greenhouse effect.