Monday, October 5, 2009

Calculating My Ecological Footprint - Consumer Consequences

By playing the game at this website:, I was able to see how many earth's it would take to sustain my lifestyle.

My score - 3.2 (give or take)

According to this small test, it would take at least 3.2 earth's to accommodate my habits. Sufficed to say I was pretty surprised.

I do notice that I use an unnecessary amount of electricity. However, at home and even at work, I turn my lights, computers, fans, and televisions off whenever possible. However, when I'm at home, I like to have the TV and fan on when I'm doing things, and I use my laptop often. The rest of my family in the house are a little worse about turning off electronics.

I don't foresee myself buying a new car soon, but when I do, I think I would like a more eco-friendly car. I drive a Hyundai Sonata now, I wasn't entirely sure what the miles per gallon were, but I thought it was a relatively fuel-efficient car. The 21.4 average they had as default in the Consumer Consequences game seemed to be what I thought my mpg's were, so I was a little confused there. I do know that I have to drive at least 10-15 miles each way to my job and work which are in approximately the same place, and I rarely drive on the interstate. I do try to take care of multiple tasks while I'm out though, if for no other reason than to save myself gas and money.

I compared myself to other players of the Consumer Consequences game and found that I was below just about everybody, which was reassuring for myself, but speaks of the poor habits of my fellow human beings in industrialized nations! I think my score reflects the fact that I do not shop very often, and I don't eat much meat or dairy. I'm out at school or work a lot, so I usually end up eating snacks like trail mix or protein bars over fast foods or similar eats. I also do not drink alcohol.

I think that the game was a great way to bring poor ecological habits to one's attention. I will do what I can to improve my score, so to speak, and take better care of Earth!

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