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Questions tagged [ecological-footprint]

a measure of how much land and ocean area is required to sustain a particular consumption pattern. This is related to, but not the same as [environmental-impact]

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Does human activity result in a net increase or decrease in co2?

Human activities cause about 10% of total co2 emissions. However, humans cultivate about half of the earths land surface. These plants potentially cause photosynthesis and lower atmospheric co2. Do ...
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What is the maximum sustainable population of the earth?

This question prompted by discussion regarding this answer to a question about vegetarianism. I recently came across a U.N. review of studies seeking to determine the earth's maximum sustainable ...
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What's the most environmentally friendly micro USB charging cable…if any?

USB cables seem to be a small but relentless part of throw-away culture. Inevitably, cables stop working well and/or get lost, and a new one is needed. Are there any USB cables produced with minimal ...
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How much is the environmental benefit of organic food offset by its higher economic cost when purchased?

One thing that I do in my life is earn extra money just so I can afford organic food as much as possible. But in this higher-earning job (which is not organic farming and thus not sustainable ...
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What should I do with coal that I have been given?

My wife and I recently moved from London to a lovely old cottage in the countryside with electricity, no gas and a wood-burning stove. We are incrementally improving insulation to make the house more ...
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1answer
97 views

Organic or packaging free food?

If I face the choice of organic, packaged food and non-organic non-packaged food - which is more sustainable? http://footprint.wwf.org.uk/ tells me the negative impact of packaging is twice as big in ...
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1answer
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Ecological Footprint: United States National Yield 2012

Does ANYONE have (or can point me to a publication that has) the national yields for the Ecological Footprint as calculated by the Global Footprint Network for the United States for the year 2012? I ...
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236 views

One single person's equal share in the world's resources

This question has been intriguing me quite some time. While regulating my own consumption of the world's resources, I keep on wondering: With the current world population, what would be each single ...
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Does responsible living leave more space to unresponsible living?

It looks to me that the efforts I'm doing to make my living more sustainable are worthless. Indeed, when some of us make efforts to lower energy consumption, doesn't it only leave harvestable ...
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How does footprint per dollar vs footprint per kilo compare for different methods of raising livestock?

As various investigative reports and documentaries have made clear by now, the environmental impacts and animal welfare abuses of CAFOs (confined animal feeding operations) are dreadful and should be ...
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3answers
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Why refrigerant cooler is more popular than evaporative cooler?

When I look at how houses/offices are cooled in my area I see that refrigerant cooler is far more popular than evaporative cooler. I did not find any company which serves evaporative cooler services/...
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Where can I find conversion factors for calculating Ecological Footprints?

Does anybody openly publish conversion factors (e.g. for miles in different modes of transport, food, etc) into global hectares for ecological footprint? Global Footprint Network, so far as I can ...
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Which is the most sustainable type of pencil?

Which type of pencil is the most sustainable one? Wooden pencil Automatic (propelling) pencil/Clutch pencil The types I'm referring to: I've read related questions about comparing pens and ...
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2answers
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What is more sustainable, using a mechanical pencil or a pen?

I was considering to use the same device for writing from now on and I was considering two alternatives: a mechanical pencil or some kind of refillable pen. Which of these two options is more ...
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2answers
122 views

How would one go about judging the sustainability of BitCoin or other cryptocurrency

I know BitCoin uses a lot of electricity for its mining, but how is this comparable to the banking system? Also, other cryptocurrencies, like PeerCoin, claim to be more environmentally friendly by ...
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The best comparison of the relative ecological impact of personal choices?

What is the best existing non-interactive comparison of the ecological impacts of different personal lifestyle choices? The obvious domains might be housing, transport, food, personal consumption and ...
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Move to electronic documents [closed]

It has occurred to me that no one has thought about this issue, so I thought I would pose the question. Why, in the modern electronic age are we still using paper? Just to give you an idea, at my ...
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6answers
381 views

How can I use my own body as an energy source for greater environmental sustainability?

I've had the epiphany that my body is a living vessel of energy production (and consumption), just like all other energy sources and associated forms of consumption or re-allocation around me. My ...
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What would be the most sustainable biomass source for (100%) ethanol production?

So I have read that sugar (cane) is way more efficient than corn, (and that Brazil leads the way in taking initiative to actually bother with this advance in biofuels sustainability), and that, based ...
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1answer
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What is the share of global human CO2 emission of cargo transport by ship?

I had an argument how bad global economic trade flows really are. The question was in particular how bad worldwide transports on cargo vessels (containers, ...) are in terms of CO2 production as well ...
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2answers
146 views

Is canned fish more sustainable than fresh?

I read this beauty-oriented article claiming that canned fish is more sustainable than fresh fish. Is this true? Listed below is a brief energy/sustainability brain dump on the subject. Canned fish: ...
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2answers
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Sustainable and ethical business resources?

Are there any resources or databases that catalog how companies perform along ethical or sustainable lines? I'm particularly interested in things like workers rights and pay, affect on the environment,...
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1answer
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If made on-site, what is needed for a solar panel

In this answer Russel says solar panels are: a sandwich of glass + bonder + silicon PV cells + bonder + backsheet This got me wondering how much of those materials are needed to make the solar ...
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Could global shift toward vegetarianism be a big step in solving food, water, health, ecological, and economical crises?

Some people, like myself, made a conscious decision to exclude various animal products from their diets, believing that this is an inevitable requirement if our species intends to live on Earth ...
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Accounting for ecological foot print of non-renewable resources

Wikipedia defines ecological footprint as the amount of biologically productive land and sea area necessary to supply the resources a human population consumes. Which overshoot can I talk about if I ...
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Is lower grammage paper with same thickness indeed greener?

I've seen a couple of offers of very white office papers that are claimed to have the same usability but slightly lower grammage (grams per square meter). One example is UPM Kymmene Yes Paper - they ...
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Research conducted into local / regional currencies

Have any research studies been published looking into localised alternative currencies, as to what their effects on the local market have been? For instance, do they really drive down food-miles, and ...
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Olive oil versus sunflower oil

I wondered what was the best, in one hand for the health (but I guess the question should be asked somewhere else, shouldn't it?) and in the other hand for the earth. Which one, if there is one, is ...
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What does it take to create an approbation label?

These days, there's a lot of approbation labels for a lot of different products: fair trade FSC (wood) MSC (fish) EU energy label and a lot more for a lot more different products. I've been ...
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Reusable vs. disposable diapers: which is better?

My wife and I have been using reusable diapers for our two kids. We've made them from old curtains, old bedsheets, etc., pretty much all "recycled" materials. They've been working perfectly fine, but ...
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4answers
735 views

What form of electrical lighting has the smallest energy-footprint?

We all know that when it comes to household electrical lighting, LED lights consume the least amount of energy for a given amount of light, followed by fluorescent tubes, halogens, and Edison-age ...
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3answers
486 views

How many children can I sustainably bring to this world?

I'm trying to calculate the ecological footprint my sexual activity will have on society 40 years into the future. What is the best amount of children to bring to the world to create a sustainable ...
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6answers
2k views

Lowest impact transatlantic crossing

What is the lowest-impact regular¹ method to cross the Atlantic Ocean? Specifically, which method has the lowest carbon dioxide equivalent emission per passenger-kilometre? I'm aware there are other ...
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2answers
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Should I raise my own animals, or support a local farm?

This winter we raised two hogs. We don't have too much land, and don't grow the grains that would be required for fully feeding them from products grown on our hobby farm. My question is whether it ...
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What are the top 5 sustainable practices for living a sustainable life? [closed]

There are so many things that one can do to lead a sustainable life. I want to know what the top 5 most impactful things that I can do in my life to help me (and my family) lead a more sustainable ...
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Impact of various travelling options

Are there any objective resources to estimate the ecological impact of various travel alternatives? Sites like Bahn.de offer to calculate it, but they obviously favour trains. I've asked a question on ...
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1answer
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How do I estimate my personal ecological footprint?

In 2000, I was introduced to the concept of the ecological footprint, and for the first time I realised how fundamentally unsustainable my lifestyle was. An environmental group had a small ...
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Should I use my wood fireplace?

I live in a relatively modern (built 1983) home, which has a fireplace in the living room. How should I decide if I should use the fireplace for heat, or strictly use use the natural-gas central ...