I have a love, hate, (love) relationship with CO2.
I love how the fizz dances on my tongue when enjoying an ice-cold Coke. But I hate the build-up of CO2 in our atmosphere and the consequent changes to our planet that may impact the way our children live. But, I also like that we can use CO2 as a refrigerant to cut our emissions as a Company (it’s 1430 times less potent a greenhouse gas than HFC-refrigerants).
While my job is to lead the Climate Protection efforts
But I don't walk around every day embarrassed by my personal carbon emissions. Maybe I should. One of our advisors, Lord Deben, worked for Margaret Thatcher and with her passing this month, I saw him quoted in an article about her climate leadership. He commented that Americans' climate denial is "a sort of hillbilly approach to the world," he said, "[that] I'm afraid is attractive to quite a large portion of the American population." You can read the entire article here.
And for one of the best sustainability speeches I've ever witnessed, see Lord Deben's remarks at the 2011 Southface Visionary Dinner.
Okay, back to the point of this post … what I really want to do is announce that I'm going to try to live a low(er)-carbon lifestyle this week. And by that I mean that I'm going to try to make conscious decisions throughout each day to choose lower carbon options. And through this blog, I'll share with you how it goes -- the successes and the failures (because I'm sure there will be some of both). And hopefully, I’ll make some decisions that I can adopt into my life beyond this week as well.
I realize that even if I could cut my emissions in half, they'd still be higher than many of yours. A colleague who's vegetarian assures me his carbon footprint will always be lower than mine. And he may be right. So let me start with humble appreciation for all that YOU are doing to keep your emissions low; climate change could be worse than it already is. I also invite you to join with me in appreciating the scale of the opportunity I have for improvement. And please wish me luck. You can also give me suggestions on the changes to make through this blog. I may not be able to take them all, but I’m certainly open to the challenge.
I'll get back to you tomorrow with reflections from day 1.
Bryan Jacob is Climate
Protection Director at The