The average American generates about 16 metric tons of carbon dioxide-equivalent a year, more than triple the global average.1
- Drive less. Walk. Take public transit. Ride a bike. Encourage your kids to walk, bus or bike instead of driving them. Combine errands. Carpool. On average, a single American driver pours 6 tons (12000 lbs) of CO2 into our atmosphere every year.
- Turn off your engine instead of idling. Eliminating unnecessary idling of personal vehicles in the U.S. would be the same as taking 5 million cars off the roads.
- Fly less. Talk online more. One round-trip flight from Seattle to New York creates a warming effect equivalent to 2 or 3 tons of CO2 per person. The value of buying carbon offsets is controversial. Vet your options carefully. Does Carbon Offsetting Really Allow You To Fly Guilt Free?
- Plan a low-carbon vacation. Tips To Reduce Your Vacation Holiday Footprint
- Drive a smaller, more fuel-efficient car. Use chains in the snow, rent a bigger vehicle when you need it. Thinking about getting an electric car? Here are a few tips to get started.
- Move closer to work.
After transportation, heating and cooling homes is how individuals contribute the most to climate change.
- Lower your thermostat and put on a sweater. Turn down the heat at night and when you’re not home. Buy a programmable thermostat.
- Insulate your walls and attic. Seal spaces where air (heat) leaks out of your home.
- Replace your light bulbs with LEDs.
- Turn off your lights.
- Use a laptop, not a desktop computer.
- Plug your electronics into power strips and turn them off when not in use.
- Buy energy efficient home appliances.
- Purchase an energy efficient furnace and get a tax credit.
- Install an electricity-powered heat pump to heat and cool your home.
- Install solar panels on your home.
- Eat less beef. Red meat uses 28 times more land and 11 times more water than pork or chicken.
- Plant a tree. Have someone plant a tree for you.
Plant for the Planet
Best way to fight climate change? Plant a trillion trees
- Purchase green power from a utility company.
- Divest from companies and banks that invest in fossil fuels.
- Invest in clean energy technologies.
- Donate to environmental nonprofits.
Let Your Representatives Know What You Think
- Contact your federal, state and local elected officials: www.usa.gov/elected-officials
- Email your state legislators: www.app.leg.wa.gov/memberemail
Climate at the Legislature: We do our best to provide a continually updated account of the status of bills about climate issues in the Washington State Legislative session.