Carbon Footprint Checklist

Carbon Footprint Checklist

Post this checklist in a prominent location at home. Tackle one or two at a time, check them off as you complete projects, and change habits. In addition to protecting the climate, you'll save money and incorporate a little more activity into your lifestyle. 

List thanks in part to Community Action for Sustainability. 


TRANSPORTATION - Every gallon of gas burned creates 19.4 lbs of CO2

□ Drive less 

□ Bike or walk for short trips 

□ Take public transit (relax - no fighting traffic) 

□ Carpool for work, kid activities, meetings, events, clubs, etc.

□ Work from home if possible (even 1 or 2 days/week helps)

□ Buy an electric vehicle 

□ Carpool adhoc via Uber POOL or Lyft Line apps 


Drive more efficiently:

□ Clear out items from trunk/rear of vehicle (do seasonally) 

□ Check tire pressure monthly 

□ Keep a regular vehicle maintenance schedule 

□ Do not exceed speed limit; accelerate/brake smoothly 

□ Consolidate trips 

□ Organize route in clockwise pattern to minimize left-hand turns




□ Insulate attic 

□ Seal airgaps to exterior throughout house 

□ Replace/clean furnace/AC filters at least every other month  when in use (keep supply) 

□ Caulk/weather strip windows & exterior doors 

□ Lower (raise) thermostat setting 2 or 3 degree F

□ Use automated thermostat 

□ Use a fan to cool instead of A/C (turn off when leaving the room)

□ Install insulated curtains/blinds & plastic film on windows


□ Replace incandescent with florescent or LED bulbs 

□ Install room occupancy sensors and timers to keeping lighting ON during occupancy only 


Water heater: 

□ Properly install tank & hot water pipe insulation 

□ Set to 120 degrees F 



□ Use appliance energy-saving options like air dry 

□ Purchase only Energy Star appliances 

□ Consider replacing old fridge/doing w/o 2nd fridge 

□ Clean refrigerator coils every 6 months 



□ Wash full loads only 

□ Use cooler water for wash cycle; cold for rinse cycle 

□ Clean dryer filter before each load 

□ Don't overheat clothes in dryer (use moisture sensor option)

□ Even better, install and use a clothes line or rack 


Dish Washing: 

□ Skip garbage disposal; scrape food bits in the green bin 

□ Only run the dishwasher when completely full 

□ Fill sink/basin rather than let the water run over dishes down the drain

□ Use a washing bowl install in the sink to minimize water usage 



□ Turn off items when not in use (lights/TV/computers…) 

□ Take shorter showers 

□ Consider installing solar panels 

□ Microwave when possible (more efficient than stove/oven)

□ Use smart power strips & unplug electronics when not in use

□ Swap gas appliances for electric 

□ Install reduced flow shower/faucet heads



□ Put paper, plastic, glass & metal in recycle bin 

□ Put yard trimmings, food & food-soiled paper in the compost bin

□ Reusable mug for coffee/tea instead of paper cups 

□ Reusable cloth bags instead of paper/plastic for all shopping 

□ Buy reusable bottles and use tap water (filtered if you like) instead  of bottled water 

□ Sign-up for Freecycle to give/get local free items 

□ Decline plastic straws/utensils & any extras you don't need

□ Repair items instead of replacing if salvageable 

□ Buy used/made from recycled materials products instead of new

□ Use dishcloths/rags instead of paper towels/other disposables

□ Donate/sell gently worn, no longer wanted items 

□ Pack no-waste lunches 

□ Switch to paperless billing 

□ Return hangers to cleaners, berry baskets to farmers' markets, etc.

□ Reduce food waste 


Other ways to help: 

□ Plant trees (lots of trees); grow a fruit and vegetable garden

□ Shop locally; buy locally made/grown goods 

□ Eat less beef and avoid processed foods with palm oil 

□ Eat a plant-based diet and reduce food waste 

□ Use rake, broom & push mowers for yard work 

□ Vote and campaign for environmentally-minded officials 

□ Give 10 friends this list and help them get started on it 

□ Volunteer with/donate to organizations that protect the climate

□ Request home energy audit