Did you know?



a collection of tips and prompts for climate action

Scientists insist that we need to reduce global emissions by between 45-50% this decade to limit warming to 1.5 degrees. Did you know that at least 70% of all emissions stem from the consumption decisions of individuals? From household energy, transport and food to purchased goods and services, holidaying and waste – it’s critical that we each contribute to the solutions we seek. We are able to achieve the required target in time, we just need to want to do it enough

It takes less than a kilo of compostable green waste placed in your landfill bin to produce enough methane to have a greater greenhouse effect than the entire contents of your garden waste bin. Nothing that rots or composts should ever go in your landfill bin. That includes paper.

Australia is one of the highest per capita emitters in the world. China and Europe have half our per-capita emissions. We outsource much of our emissions to China, via offshore industries, which conveniently reduces our own emissions. China’s total renewable capacity accounts for a third of the world’s total, and it produces and sells more electric vehicles than any other country. It is now possible that China will reach their net zero 2060 target before Europe and the U.S.

Did you know that with a little research and planning, it is possible to significantly reduce the emissions from your international travel? While air travel makes up a relatively small portion of global emissions at around 2.5%, water vapour released by plane engines doubles the global warming effect to about 5%, making flying one of the most warming-intensive activities (predominantly taken by only around 3% of the worlds population).

So from the outset, consider whether you can:

  • Avoid air travel in the first place. Go local, go by rail, car (preferably electric) and car pool if you can
  • Reduce the distance travelled. Fly to a closer holiday destination or fly part way and then take a cleaner alternative for the rest of the journey
  • Reduce the emissions intensity. Each aircraft type and configuration has its own emissions per passenger, with newer types generally having lower emissions. An Airbus A350 or Boeing 787 “Dreamliner” has up to 25% lower emissions per passenger mile travelled when compared to older planes including the A380 commonly flown to Australia. Reward airlines who use these newer planes – Google Flights is a good place to start as it gives comparative emissions for each itinerary.
  • Downgrade. Each passenger in Economy, Business and First Class takes up progressively more space and reduces the number of passengers ‘sharing’ the emissions. The higher the class, the higher share of emissions. The old chestnut that “if I don’t someone else will” simply doesn’t hold: airlines constantly adjust their schedules to reflect changing passenger demand.
  • Avoid ultra long-haul flights like Perth to London or Australian East Coast to inland US destinations which involve a higher fuel load that can reduce passenger numbers, increasing emissions per person.