What gets measured gets done; particularly if you make it public. Family carbon audit for 2019.


Headline: We cut our emissions 24%, 7.15 metric tons of CO2e, between 2018 and 2019.

Subtitle: We remain not awesome. 22.40 metric tons was the 2019 total for the two of us.

Here is a breakdown of how 2019 compared to 2018:


The major difference comes from changing vehicles. We sold our old Ford Focus and purhased a used 2017 Hyundai Ioniq. We also tried as much as possible to not drive the pickup truck. The result is really good; even though the Ioniq took us on a road trip to Moab and back, the total gas used across all our driving is much lower.

We also made some minor reductions in eating impact. Primarily this involved cutting out ingredients with catastrophic carbon footprints: sustainably caught tuna and tomatoes. I’ve been blogging about low-carbon impact recipes over at Carbon Cook (defunct, sorry).


We increased our electricity use! We’ve been running the laundry a lot, as well as the dishwasher.

We also moved house, and it could be the new house pulls more power for the A/C.


So, how could we reduce this even further? Actionables for 2020:

  • Go through the new rental house and do the regular basics
    • Replace all light fixtures with LED lamps
    • Install low-flow shower fixtures
    • Set water heater to lowest heat setting
  • Consider stopping use of the gas stove, instead put a portable induction heater on top; it’s not clear to me that this will be more efficient, we have no ability to choose clean electricity and the power we get remains 92% coal and gas
  • Explore green lease options - is there a way to upgrade the home appliances that the landlord would agree to?
    • Eg: Heat-pump dryer, heat-pump water-heater, heat-pump HVAC heater
  • Hang-drying clothes?
  • Start preparing to sell the Chevy; we’ll need it until the spring of 2021 though to haul lumber and insulation.


Same as in 2018.

See also