This is a great basic calculator, and the one we use in our Climate/Carbon Literacy class:

Footprint Calculator from the Global Footprint Network

Taking an environmental footprint assessment is like hopping on a scale after years of avoidance: it may not be fun to look at, but it’s an important first step:

Hi, my name is ___________.  I’ve just learned that my lifestyle requires the equivalent of ___ planets.

— additional calculators for details and solutions —

Sitra Lifestyle Test This is a very Euro test (Finland-based). You’ll need to make some estimates and metric conversions, but the recommendations at the end of the test are well worth the hassle.

The BBC’s Climate Change Food Calculator Wondering about your diet? It’s one of the areas where Americans have the most opportunity to adapt. This is a helpful quiz from across the pond. The single biggest/easiest change you can make in the least amount of time is to make a choice not to fly when the option presents. This assessment may prompt you to travel differently.

Gamify & socialize your reduction/things to do and talk about in your daily life:

Random Acts of Green – point-based app to reinforce lower-carbon choices (Canadian org)

Climate Pledge Collective -tips for engaging your own friends & family in conversations about the Climate Emergency

Yale Program on Climate Communication – do you geek out over data & infographics? Wanna digest a whole boatload of interesting facts and details about how people in the US are responding to climate? This is a fascinating program w/ an even more fascinating web site (if you geek out over data & infographics like we do).

Food-related reductions:

Making the switch from animal to plant-based meals is an adaptive process: unless someone else does your cooking (or you have an unlimited grocery budget), it’s going to involve learning to cook differently, trying new recipes, and sometimes, coming up short. We recommend plant-based pot-lucks and group taste-tests to explore more options, more quickly (and with friends!).

The BBC’s Climate Change Food Calculator Understand where you’re at. It’s kind of like stepping on the scale.

PlantPlate – A Beginner’s Guide to Plant-Based Baking– Best Plant-Based Dining/Options in MSP

Housing-related reductions in MSP:

Zillow – when it’s time for a move, constrain searches by square feet, keywords (i.e. ‘solar’ or ‘bus’)

CleanChoice Energy – 100% clean solar/wind electricity: no panels, no contracts.

Transit-related reductions in MSP:

HourCar – car sharing service

Total Transit – high quality transit app (buses, LRT)

Whiz – another fabulous transit app (buses, LRT)

Google Maps App – as good as any multi-modal transit app with rideshare integration, too.

Amtrak – interstate travel (keep you on the ground)

Various car rental companies – great for weekend rentals

Lyft – always an option for emergencies and last-minute travel

Calculate your flight emissions (and/or estimate for budgeting purposes)

Secondhand Goods – finding exactly what you need, when you need it:

eBay – constrain searches by ‘used’ condition and sort/constrain by distance to keep your purchases on the ground. Bonus: you’re often supporting a small business, recycling business, or sole proprietor.

Get involved in local Climate Activism:

Citizens’ Climate Lobby There are more than 20 chapters of this organization in Minnesota alone. They’ve got some big ideas and a rapidly expanding coalition.

Transition USA – National site for Transition Towns international. The Minneapolis metro area has five separate community-based T-Town groups (including one in Longfellow and another in Powderhorn)

Climate Reality Project – An international organization that Al Gore founded and leads. This org is primarily about political action and social influence. – Minnesota Chapter – pipeline protest/direct climate action

Extinction Rebellion – Twin Cities Chapter – protest/direct climate action

Sunrise Movement – Twin Cities Hub – youth led movement (get the kids involved!)

Minneapolis Climate Action – formerly known as Interfaith Power & Light, this well-organized volunteer organization was responsible for championing and piloting our city-wide Organics program.

Climate Politics:

Twin Cities DSA – Our local chapter of Democratic Socialists has an Ecosocialist Branch. If you’re displeased with the current pace of climate legislation, you may find this anti-Capitalism group to your liking.

DFL – Environmental Caucus – Help push a blue party to the left on Climate.

Green New Deal – An economic stimulus program proposed with the goal of addressing both economic inequality & climate change.


Junket’s Research & Infographics (shareable with attribution to Junket/Julie Kearns):

Recurring theme of Junket’s research:

When it comes to consumer emissions, small things (and changes) add up quickly when they become culturally normal.

Empty Amazon Cardboard Boxes:

Paper Clips:

Data sources:

A data-based case for secondhand clothing, courtesy of Levi Strauss’ own product lifecycle assessment (with gratitude to the Wayback Machine for keeping it available). For additional guidance on interpreting the chart below,