Climate change drives anxiety and apathy 

So much is at stake in our fight against climate change that it can feel overwhelming. Coming to grips with the complex causes and global impacts of the environmental crisis is hard enough - but we also face the monumental task of stopping it.

The enormity of the problem has caused ‘climate anxiety’ to go mainstream. This refers to an intense worry about the unfolding crisis, and the consequences it will have on our precious natural world as well as human lives and livelihoods around the world. 

Adding to this feeling of doom is a widespread belief that our choices are insignificant, and we can’t make a meaningful difference in the fight against climate change. Luckily, while the idea that we don’t have power can lead to anxiety and apathy, it simply isn’t true.

We can make a difference

On the one hand, yes, there are huge drivers of the climate crisis that are out of our control - we aren’t world leaders or the heads of fossil fuel industries, and can’t stop polluting companies emitting carbon and degrading the environment.

However, particularly for those of us who live in high income countries, global emissions largely stem from our own daily actions and consumption habits. The problems start with us - and so do the solutions. As individuals, we can make small changes in our lives that will make a real, tangible difference to the climate crisis. 

Everyone thinks they’re only one person, and their choices won’t make a difference. But what about the actions of millions - or billions - of people? Imagine what would be possible at that scale! Your carbon footprint is the sum total of the greenhouse gases your actions have caused to be released into the atmosphere.   

To avoid a temperature rise of two degrees or worse - which would have devastating impacts on our planet - scientists say that the average global carbon footprint should be around two tonnes by 2050. In the UK, the current average is ten tonnes.

Calculating your carbon footprint - and you can do so through our app - gives you an insight into what elements of your daily lifestyle are generating the most greenhouse gas emissions, and where you can make the most impactful changes.

Your carbon footprint will show how much carbon emissions you are responsible for across the following areas:

Transport

In your everyday life, how do you normally get from A to B? 

Transport emissions stem from the fuel from your personal vehicles as well as public transport like trains and buses. Driving is the most polluting option, so how often you do so will contribute significantly to your carbon footprint.

Food

All of our food comes with emissions attached, stemming from how it was produced, how it was packaged, and how it travelled. The kinds of food you buy regularly, how often you eat at restaurants, and if you tend to shop from local suppliers or supermarket chains, or restaurants will all impact your personal carbon footprint.

Travel

Flying halfway across the world for a holiday? Travelling by plane gives off huge amounts of CO2 - even a short trip from London to Rome emits as much as citizens of 17 countries do in a year.  

Home and living

Unless you live like a caveman, or your home runs on 100% renewables, daily tasks like cooking, washing clothes, and working on a laptop all use energy from fossil fuels, which add up to form a sizable carbon footprint. 

Shopping also contributes to greenhouse gas emissions, since our smartphones, gadgets, and new clothes don’t grow on trees - they’re made in factories through processes that are generally highly carbon emitting and environmentally harmful. People often buy far more than they need, which pads out our unhealthy carbon footprints.

Digital

The things we do online - posting on social media, sending messages, streaming videos - all carry a carbon footprint. Millions of physical servers are needed to keep the internet up and running, consuming a mammoth amount of energy

Every day, we all make unsustainable choices of some kind. But luckily there are many solutions and ways we can drive down our carbon footprints. In a future article, we’ll show you exactly how you can change your lifestyle to make a tangible impact towards stopping climate change.

Other ways you can turn the tide on the climate crisis

Beyond cutting your personal carbon footprint, there are many other ways you can get involved in the fight against climate change. Here are some ideas:

Influence people around you

Once you’ve taken steps to live more sustainably, you can make an even bigger impact by telling others about the changes you’ve made. Talk to people around you or post on social media about the actions you’re taking to protect the environment, and why. 

Don’t attack people for not being as eco-friendly as you, but simply share your motivations and answer any questions people have. Imagine if you inspire three people, and those people go on to inspire three more people each, and it causes a ripple effect - we might stop climate change much faster.

Make your voice heard

Around the world, people are consistently stepping up to demand their governments, workplaces, or even their local football clubs take action on the climate crisis. The more people that join protests against environmental destruction, the more power we have and the more likely we are to see change.

And if you want to see your community become greener, why not join or start a local group to campaign on an issue, such as better cycle lanes or recycling facilities.

Plant trees and protect nature

Forests are essential for life - they provide food, shelter, and medicine, as well as storing carbon, making them a critical tool in our arsenal for fighting climate change. By protecting these natural carbon sinks, we can cool the planet down by speeding the removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere.

Tribaldata’s research found that everyone in Britain could offset their average annual carbon footprint by planting 650 trees. But it’s unlikely we’ll have the space to plant these ourselves in our back gardens. As well as helping you to learn more about living sustainably, our app means you can earn points and use them to plant trees around the world.

Time to take action

So there you have it - we can fight climate change by keeping track of our personal carbon footprints and taking steps to protect the environment both globally and in our local communities. 

As individuals, we might act alone but we aren’t powerless - each of us will play a vital role in stopping the worst impacts of the climate crisis. The next time someone tells you that one person can’t make a difference, come back to this article to remember all the ways we can.

We’re in a race against time to beat climate change. The science is clear: to ensure our planet is livable for future generations, global emissions need to peak by 2025 and drop by 45% by 2030.

By emissions, scientists mean greenhouse gases - mostly carbon dioxide - that become trapped in the earth’s atmosphere and heat up the planet. This global warming is having extreme effects on the earth’s weather systems, including frequent fires, droughts, and floods.  

But what causes these emissions? And how can we reduce them in time to combat climate change and save our world from destruction?

Let’s take a look at the biggest sources of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide.

Powering the globe

Modern life is dependent on energy. We use it for everything: from cooking, to heating or cooling our homes, to our computers and phones. The supply of energy to people’s homes makes up around 11% of global emissions

That’s before we get to the fact that many people, mostly in Africa and Asia, still don’t have access to electricity - about 770 million in total. As electricity access improves and populations become wealthier, the global demand for energy will continue to grow. To avoid further climate change, we need to power up low-income countries with reliable clean energy.

Rather than burning harmful fossil fuels, we can harness the powers of the natural world, such as sunlight and wind, to make clean energy that won’t run out. The future looks bright, as the price of renewables is falling by the minute, so it’ll make both economic and environmental sense for countries to make the switch. In 2050, 90% of the world’s electricity could come from renewable sources.

Feeding the world

Before it reaches our plates, our food has been on a long journey. It’s been grown, stored, processed, packaged, transported, and cooked - and often these stages occur in different countries. And every stage of this journey causes greenhouse gases to be emitted. 

A large part of the emissions from food happen on the farm. Livestock such as cows produce methane, which is over 28 times more warming than carbon dioxide. And fertilising soils, which is crucial to ensure we grow enough crops to feed the world’s population, accelerates emissions of nitrous oxide - a lesser-known greenhouse gas.

Agriculture also means that forests - such as the Amazon rainforest - are converted into farmland, meaning we lose the carbon-storing superpowers of trees. Closer to home, forest coverage in Europe has halved over the last 6,000 years, in part because of the demand for agricultural land. 

There’s no quick fix for solving the emissions from agriculture. Building a sustainable food system while feeding the world’s growing population will be one of the biggest challenges in fighting the climate crisis. 

And some solutions are arising, like innovative and less carbon-intensive farming techniques. Our personal consumption matters too - armed with the knowledge that meat and dairy account for 14.5% of the world’s carbon emissions, many people are changing their diets to limit their impact on the planet. 

Transport takes a toll

We all know how frustrating it is to be stuck in a queue of traffic, and the planet shares your pain. Most cars are gas guzzlers, polluting the air and emitting carbon dioxide as they clog up the roads. 

In recent years, electric cars have gone mainstream, and they’ll undoubtedly be part of the solution to the transport emissions problem - as long as they run on renewable energy, that is. But to effectively slash emissions from transport - which accounts for a fifth of all emissions - we’ll need to rethink how we travel altogether. 

Public transport is far less damaging to the environment than driving, but poor infrastructure means that many people don’t have the option. Better public transport - as well as safe routes for cyclists - will help us drive down our emissions, and have the added benefits of reducing air pollution and building healthier communities. 

And, as the pandemic showed us, much of the daily travel we took for granted was never really necessary in the first place. Many workers swapped their commute into city offices for a much shorter trip to the kitchen table - saving millions of tonnes of carbon emissions in the process.

Carbon is in fashion 

The rise of fast fashion - where clothes are made and sold as quickly and cheaply as possible - is an environmental disaster. The fashion industry is responsible for over 10% of annual carbon dioxide emissions, and to slow climate change, we need to change both how our clothes are made, and how we shop.

We are buying more clothes than ever before, and because emissions stem from their materials, production, washing, and transport, the planet pays the price for our oversized wardrobes. Many of these clothes end up in landfill after only a few wears, taking hundreds of years to fully decompose, or are incinerated, releasing more greenhouse gases. 

Currently, polyester is the most common fabric in clothes, and is made from oil, using about 70 million barrels a year. But fashion’s carbon footprint is becoming too big to ignore, so designers are increasingly looking to change how clothes are made. Recycled or natural materials, such as wood pulp, are much kinder to the planet. 

Clothing brand Patagonia is a leading example of how companies can be more sustainable - it is working towards using 100% recycled or renewable materials, has an official outlet for selling second-hand Patagonia clothing, and will recycle customers' goods that are beyond wear.

However, part of the answer also lies with us as individuals. We should stop seeing clothes as disposable and following trends that are over almost as soon as they start, and start seeing the clothes we buy as investments to last a lifetime.

What goes to waste

Only 9% of all the plastic waste that’s ever been made has been recycled. The rest has been incinerated, thrown away to sit in landfills, or swept into our oceans, harming marine life and disrupting delicate ecosystems. 

Food waste is also an issue - 2.5 billion tonnes of food ends up wasted before it is eaten, and gives off the powerfully damaging methane as it rots in landfill. 

Of course, recycling is one important solution to the waste problem - but what’s even better is to cut down on how much we produce in the first place, only making what we need.

Cutting carbon emissions can save the world

All of these sectors have big carbon footprints, and there are many obstacles in the way of the green and sustainable future we desperately need. The task in front of us might seem overwhelming.

But when we take action together, we have the power to change the world. By making even small changes to our lives, all of us will make a big difference.

Taking these important steps doesn’t have to be difficult, and you don’t have to go it alone. Our app gives you concrete, personally tailored suggestions for how you can tackle your emissions. Download it today for a host of tips and tricks, from swapping your energy provider to choosing sustainable Christmas and birthday gifts. 

Together, we can win the fight against climate change and protect our planet.

There’s no question about it: the planet is heating up, and if we don’t act now the consequences will be disastrous. We’re currently on track to reach 1.5 degrees of global warming – the limit the world signed up to in the Paris Agreement – by the 2030s. 

The race is on to grind climate change to a halt and stop unprecedented disasters unfolding around the world. It can be done – as long as we start now.

What will happen if we fail to tackle climate change

Human activity has warmed the climate by at least 1.1 degrees celsius since 1880. We’re already seeing the catastrophic toll this is taking on communities and nature around the world. From extreme flooding in Pakistan, to fires in Australia, to drought in Kenya – the past few years have seen a constant stream of headlines about the devastating impacts of extreme weather.

If carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise unchecked, this destruction will happen more often and across bigger parts of the world. Sea level rise and other cataclysmic weather events triggered by the climate crisis will displace billions of people. Agricultural production will plummet, leading to worldwide food shortages and famine, while the natural world will also suffer, with many species being wiped out completely. 

To make things worse, further temperature rises will mean we could pass climate tipping points that will bring about unprecedented and unpredictable disasters. In the worst case scenario, entire ecosystems will collapse completely, and large parts of the earth will become completely uninhabitable for humans or any other form of life.

But stopping climate change is possible

While this picture of the world that awaits us is certainly bleak, what’s important to remember is that it isn’t set in stone.

Humans are responsible for this dangerous rise in greenhouse gases, which stems largely from societies’ use of fossil fuels for transport, energy, and food production. We’re the problem, which means the power to stop the destruction in its tracks and protect the world for future generations is in our hands.

Countries around the world can halt the crisis by transitioning to a low carbon economy, where we shift away from using fossil fuels and learn to live more sustainably. That’s possible because of the huge strides we’ve made in green technology – for example, clean energy has never been cheaper, and as of this year provides 10% of the world’s power. Not only will switching to renewables help us defeat climate change, but it’ll lead to a cleaner, healthier planet overall. 

We all have a role to play

According to the UN, to keep global heating under 1.5 degrees, worldwide carbon emissions need to be reduced by 45% by 2030 and equivalent to net zero by 2050. Countries around the world have committed to reaching these goals, but are falling far behind on meeting them – and emissions continue to rise.

That’s why people are so important in the fight against climate change. While governments may have the final say on policies, we can push for political change and ensure our leaders stick to their climate commitments, move away from fossil fuels, and invest in renewable energy.

And our daily actions matter too: from what we eat to how often we drive. By making more sustainable decisions every day, we can help drive down carbon emissions and cast our vote for a greener, safer world. While the scale of the problem can sometimes make our choices seem insignificant, even the smallest changes will make a huge difference if millions of people get onboard.

We can even reverse climate change

Driving down carbon emissions is the most important task we face – but we can also harness the power of nature to begin to repair the damage we’ve done to the planet.

Our forests and soils naturally absorb carbon, helping to keep the planet cool. By individual actions like planting and conserving trees and shifting to more sustainable farming practices, we can help bring the earth’s temperature back down while restoring our precious natural resources.

However, it’s important to note that reforestation isn’t a quick fix – trees can take many years to grow big enough to store a substantial amount of carbon, and there’s always a risk of them being destroyed by fires, insects, or logging.

To capture carbon faster, scientists are racing to develop technological carbon removal solutions, which would capture the greenhouse gas in the same way as forests, but work faster and more reliably. However, these innovations are incredibly expensive, and yet to be available at a large enough scale to make a meaningful difference to the level of carbon in the atmosphere. 

Natural and manmade solutions to carbon removal are a critical tool in our arsenal, and will play a pivotal role in both avoiding and reversing climate change. But they’re no substitute for acting now to cut our carbon emissions at the source.

It’s not too late - but we need to act now

“It’s now or never.” That’s what the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said in its latest report in April this year.

If we carry on with business as usual, and continue to live unsustainably, we’re facing a temperature rise of around three degrees by 2100 – which will have terrible consequences for lives, livelihoods, and the natural world. 

Luckily, the changes we need to make to avoid this disastrous future are within our grasp. We can still turn the tide on climate change. And every fraction of a degree of warming we avoid will save people from death and species from extinction.

We know what the solutions are – now we need to get all hands on deck fast enough to stop the crisis. By acting as individuals, but thinking collectively, each of us can make a huge difference in the fight against climate change. 

If you’re ready to start making a difference, our app can help you calculate your carbon footprint and figure out the most impactful changes you can start making today. Try it now and start your climate journey today.

Over 100.000 trees planted in Madagascar!

Today, Friday the 2nd of December 2022 we passed the magic limit of 100.000 trees! 🎉 🎊🥳

We are absolutely thrilled to have reached this so significant milestone which wouldn’t have been possible without our fantastic Community, Marketers and Partners. Thanks to the community of 12k+ individuals and the fantastic individuals working at the Eden Reforestation plantation on Madagascar’s farthest western point near Cape St. Andre the world is now a little bit greener.

30.000.000 kg of CO2 is a big number

Although we already have set our sights on the next objective, let’s take a step back and reflect on what 100.000 trees mean.

Each tree has the capacity to absorb about 12.3 kg of CO2 per year during their 25 year life span. This means a bit over 300 kg of CO2 per tree, which is quite a lot in itself. 100.000 trees means 1.230.000 kg of CO2 per year. 30.000.000 kg of CO2 during the trees life time. 

Big numbers can often be hard to grasp. Contrasting this with that an average citizen in the UK emit 7.2 tonnes of CO2 per year, it equates the emissions from about 170 people in the UK for 30 years, or the weight of 45 full grown humpback whales, who can be seen throughout its coastal waters of Madagascar.

Positive effects for the ecosystem, beyond reducing CO2

Besides all the CO2 absorbed by the trees during their lifetime and the positive effects it has on fighting climate change, it gives a well needed refuge for animals and helps wildlife thrive in a part of the world heavily affected by deforestation. Moreover, it helps the people living there. 

Before this project began, the mangrove forests found in this area were severely impacted by deforestation and forest degradation from charcoal production and wood collection for cooking, construction, and other purposes.

Work opportunities for the local community

Planting 100.000 trees is quite a daunting task in itself. It means about 1000 work days for the team in Madagascar. This particular part of Madagascar is situated in an area with few opportunities for employment, and the positive socio-economic effects of access to reliable employment are significant. Parents who were once unable to put food on the table and pay for their children’s schooling are now able to provide good meals for their family members and send their kids to school. Microenterprises also pop up as a side effect, further improving the region’s economy. The list of positive side effects can be made long.

Every tree that get planted through the app means a positive change. For people’s lives. For meaningful and stable employment. For the local communities, that are brought back to life and thrive again. For the ecosystem. For the planet.

What's next

This is what the Tribaldata community has done to date. Imagine what can be done during 2023. Imagine what can be done if the community doubles in size, or triples! 

There is so much left to be done! Let’s continue planting. Let’s go for the next 100.000 trees and beyond. Let’s keep in mind the ripple effect that restoration gives, positively changing everything that surrounds it. 

Thank you so much for staying with us this far, we hope you are looking forward to reaching 200.000 trees as much as we do!

Climate Change is happening

Scientists and policymakers at the IPCC, which assess science related to climate change on behalf of the United Nations, have agreed that global warming beyond 2°C poses an escalating risk to human life as we know it on Earth. 

In other words – our carbon footprints need to go down significantly.

In the EU, where the average carbon footprint is about 7,5 tonnes per person the reduction needed is substantial.

Your carbon footprint

A carbon footprint is a measurement of the total amount of greenhouse gases generated by an activity. Just as you can measure the carbon footprint of a factory, you can also measure the carbon footprint caused by an individual.
To calculate your personal carbon footprint you need to know two things. How big your emissions are, and how much you offset.

Most activities increase your carbon footprint in one way or another, such as flying or eating meat.

This is why it is important to learn how your activities affect your carbon footprint and start practicing activities that reduce it, such as planting trees.

Why it is important to know your carbon footprint

To understand if you make progress, you need to understand where you start from. Just as a captain of a ship out on the ocean – if you want to reach a specific destination, first you need to know where you start from.
In your journey, your current carbon footprint is that starting point. This is why it is so important.

How to calculate your carbon footprint

In the Tribaldata app, it is easy to calculate your carbon footprint. You do this by answering simple questions about you, your habits and circumstances in your life. Continuing on the journey, you can answer further questionnaires to get sustainability tips tailored to you. Tips that can help you understand what causes your emissions, and how to reduce them.
Furthermore as a bonus, you will also get points to plant trees as you progress.

How to reduce your carbon footprint

Now that you know your starting point, the next step is to set your destination. What also helps are some realistic goals on your way there.

With your carbon footprint calculated, it will be a lot easier to measure and compare to see that you are going in the right direction, and how much. This will help you stay motivated and to make the changes that are within your reach. You can compare yourself to earlier levels and even compare with friends and exchange tips. 

If you haven’t done so already, why not calculate your carbon footprint right now and plant your first tree! It might be the best spent 3 minutes in a long time!

We all have a carbon footprint

We all have a carbon footprint, there is no escaping it. Our carbon footprint is a measurement of how much we contribute to the greenhouse effect and ultimately the ongoing global warming. 

The best way to reduce your carbon footprint is to avoid making emissions. However – eventually once you have changed all the habits you can to get closer to zero. What do you do next?

Planting trees as a part of the solution

There are a number of ways to reduce the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. When we decided what to offer to the Tribaldata community we opted for offering the simplest and most proven method there is – planting trees.

To plant trees, we chose to work with Eden Reforestation. Their expertise, scale and track record in running hundreds of successful reforestation projects around the world is quite impressive.

How Eden Reforestation plant trees

In close partnership with the local communities, Eden are today running hundreds of  reforestation projects around the world. There, in extremely remote settings, they work  through a range of challenges, from extreme weather and landslides, to poachers, bandits, and wild animals.

They work alongside the communities  to produce, plant, and protect trees, and in the process creating jobs to support them in restoring their local environment and economy long-term.

Why Madagascar

Because of its many endemic species and severe habitat loss rates, Madagascar is one of the world’s top priorities when it comes to biodiversity. The destruction of the mangroves along the coast has caused a lot of issues. Mudflats wash into the ocean, destroying once-productive fisheries and the vulnerability of coastal communities to hurricanes, tsunamis, and floods increases.

The plantation in Madagascar

Eden reforestation projects began restoring the mangroves in Mahajanga in 2007. There they work with clearing of dead trees, collecting native species, and planting trees during low tide. Less than a decade since the start, the site developed into a thriving mangrove forest, with a healthy aquatic ecosystem. Since this first plantation, various others have been started and Edens activities have grown to also include a variety of upland dry deciduous forests in 2012.

Today, Eden run close to 100 project sites with everything that entails such as extensive infrastructure with guardhouses, fire towers, and seed banks. They also developed a training center for local nursery managers to teach seedling management and effective reforestation techniques.

Planting trees fight climate change and alleviate poverty

Edens work is creating livelihoods for thousands of people currently living in extreme poverty by empowering them to restore and protect forests on a massive scale. This helps reverse climate change, global deforestation, habitat loss for endangered species, and extreme poverty. There are many reasons why Eden Reforestation Projects is a great partner to work with. The positive effects of planting trees go well beyond the pure reduction of CO2 in the atmosphere.

Plant trees for free with the Tribaldata app

Science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke once wrote – “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic”. Technology is about harnessing complex chains of events and making them simple and accessible to people.

So the next time you press the button in the app to plant a tree, although on your part it can seem almost effortless, you are making a very real positive difference. You tapping the button give a positive ripple effect that is felt through people’s lives in Madagascar. For meaningful and stable employment. For the local communities, that are brought back to life and thrive again. For the ecosystem. For the planet.

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