Work out your contribution to climate change

Using our questionnaire, you can calculate the size of your own carbon footprint - and begin planning how to reduce it. Answer all the questions that are relevant - some may not be - and try to be as truthful as you possibly can


If you are a regular car driver:

Typical driver (8,500 miles a year in petrol car) 3,500kg

High-mileage driver (15,000 miles a year) 6,200kg

Very low-mileage driver (2,000 miles a year) 830kg

If most of your trips are less than three miles, add 25 per cent to the total.

If you drive a 4x4, add another 40 per cent; OR for a small car (a Clio, or new Mini, say), subtract 33 per cent.

Your car score: .....

If you use public transport:

For 150 miles a week by rail or bus 700kg

If you walk two miles a day, or cycle five miles 100kg

If you fly, for each hour you spend in the air each year 350kg



If you have central heating

You live in a detached house 4,800kg

You live in a semi-detached house 3,200kg

You live in a terraced house 2,200kg

You live in a flat 4,800kg

You only heat the room you're in 800kg

For each degree above 17C at which your thermostat is set, add 10 per cent to your score.

For each degree below, subtract 10 per cent.

If your home is well-insulated, subtract 30 per cent from your score so far. If you have a new condensing-flue boiler, subtract another 20 per cent. If your boiler is more than 15 years old, add 15 per cent.

These figures assume you use gas. For electricity-fired heating, multiply your score by 2.5. For oil, add 40 per cent. For coal, add 80 per cent.

Your heating score .....

Hot water

If you have a bath every day 300kg

If you have a combination boiler and mostly shower 200kg

If you have solar panels, subtract one third. Otherwise, the figures assume you use gas. If you use electricity to heat water, multiply your score by 2.5. If you use oil, add 40 per cent.

Your hot water score .....


Start with a score of 1,600kg.

If you use A-rated appliances and efficient light bulbs subtract 400kg

If you conserve electricity (switching off lights etc), subtract 200kg

If your household is a major electricity consumer, add 1,400kg

If you have an oil-fired Aga, or a similar range cooker, add 5,000kg

Your appliances score .....



For a typical British diet, 38 per cent meat-based 2,000kg

For high-meat diet (50 per cent, say) 2,250kg

For vegetarians 1,400kg

For vegans 1,000kg

If you only eat organically produced food, subtract 50 per cent from this score

If most of your food is processed or imported, add 100kg

If very little of your food is processed and/or imported, subtract 400kg

If you rarely eat away from home, in restaurants or canteens, subtract 100kg

If you eat half your meals in restaurants or canteens, add 100kg



If you produce an average one dustbin of waste each week, score 1,400kg

If you produce more or less than this, scale your score accordingly

In addition, if you:

Compost all kitchen and garden waste, subtract 20 per cent of the total

Recycle all paper, glass and metal, subtract 10 per cent

Recycle all plastic apart from bags, subtract 20 per cent

If your home is less than 50 years old, add:

For four-bedroom detached home 1,500kg

For three-bedroom semi 1,000kg

For two-bedroom terraced 750kg

For one-bedroom flat 500kg

For one-room extension or loft conversion 250kg

If you filled a skip with building or DIY waste, add 1,000kg



The items in the previous boxes account for 60 to 65 per cent of most people's emissions. To make a rough estimate of the rest, consider your household spending on goods and services.

How much does your household spend each year, in pounds, on durable items such as clothing, furniture and electrical appliances, and on services such as entertainment, telephone bills and healthcare? Do not include food, travel, home energy, or your mortgage, rent, tax, pension contributions or savings. Divide the total by two to get your emissions in kilograms.

To allow for state activities conducted on your behalf, add 2,400kg.



Add up your score for:

1. Transport .....

2. Energy in your home .....

3. Food .....

4. Materials and waste .....

5. Everything else .....


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