Did you know that between 1990 and 2019, the warming effect of carbon dioxide on the Earth’s atmosphere increased by 36%?
Human beings have a significant impact on the amount of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere. Travelers have an even greater impact and, with that, a greater responsibility to reduce their carbon footprint.
Traveling with Kuoda is your first step to fulfilling that responsibility. But there are a host of other things you can do to reduce your carbon footprint while traveling, and we’re going to tell you about the top 6.
What Is a Carbon Footprint?
Usually measured in tons of carbon dioxide, a carbon footprint is a measure of the greenhouse gases indirectly and directly used to support a person’s lifestyle and activities. In other words, your carbon footprint is how much carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (including methane, nitrous oxide, and fluorinated gases) you emit as a result of daily activities.
But why is it important? Well, because it measures greenhouse gases and carbon dioxide, your carbon footprint provides insight into how your behavior impacts global warming.
Carbon dioxide is one of the biggest contributors to global warming. In fact, increased atmospheric carbon dioxide is responsible for at least two-thirds of the energy imbalance that’s causing an increase in global temperatures.
That means, if you have an interest in stopping climate change and positively impacting your environment, you should understand your carbon footprint. And this is especially important while traveling.
Carbon Footprint and Travel
8% of the world’s total carbon emissions come from tourism. Among the most problematic activities when it comes to carbon dioxide and greenhouse gas emissions involve transportation, accommodation, food, and development of infrastructure.
Transportation is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the tourism industry. Between 2005 and 2016, these emissions increased by more than 60%, making it a priority when you’re trying to be mindful of your footprint during travel.
Accommodations create emissions primarily through energy use. Hotels, homestays, and rental homes use heating and air conditioning, water heaters, electricity, laundry machines, and other energy-intense equipment. Inefficient appliances and electrical systems in less developed destinations can make matters even worse.
One-quarter of the greenhouse gas emissions in the world come from food production, meaning that the choices you make around food are important when traveling. Remember that food has to be grown, processed, transported, packaged, refrigerated, and cooked before it makes its way to your plate, and that all involves energy.
Tourism actually impacts an environment before it even starts. Airports, hotels, restaurants, and other infrastructure has to be built to accommodate tourists. Constructing these places can destroy ecosystems and takes vast amounts of energy.
All of this is to say that, as a traveller, you have a greater responsibility than most to be aware of wasteful travel choices and behaviours. The good news is, Kuoda is helping you reduce your carbon footprint in more ways than one.
6 Tips to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint During Luxury Travel
Are you looking to be more conscious in your travels? Let us tell you how, with these 6 tips to reducing your carbon footprint during your luxury trip with Kuoda.
1. Prep Your Home
Step 1 of reducing your footprint actually begins before you ever leave your house. Your home uses energy in all kinds of ways and you’ll want to minimize the energy being used while you’re away.
You can unplug your appliances so there’s no energy running to them, disable your cooling or heating systems (or keep them set at the safest minimum), and make sure all of your lights and automatic lights are switched off. There’s no need for your Wi-Fi to be plugged in, either.
Air travel is the fastest-growing source of carbon dioxide emissions and accounts for 4-9% of the climate change impact caused by human activities. What’s more, that figure is only expected to grow.
Of course, there’s probably no way for you to get to your destination other than taking a plane. But there are environmentally conscious ways of going about that, such as:
- Choosing a green airline or at least an airline using fuel-efficient planes.
- Making as few layovers as possible on the way to and from your destination.
- Packing lightly because the heavier the luggage on board, the more fuel is required.
Once you’re on the ground, Kuoda takes care of ensuring that your transportation needs are met, and in the most environmentally conscious way. Plus, we offer tons of tours that are emissions-free or close to it, including biking, rafting, hiking, and walking tours.
3. Green Accommodations
As we discussed above, lodging and accommodations are one of the more problematic activities in terms of carbon emissions and traveling. But, by choosing Kuoda, you’re also choosing the green hosts we work with.
We work with accommodations that are sustainable or that have made significant efforts to reduce their environmental impact and, by extension, the impact of their guests. These are businesses that are carbon neutral, use green energy sources and energy-saving appliances, develop recycling programs, implement linen reuse initiatives, and more.
4. Eat Local
Food is another major source of carbon emission so it’s important to be mindful of what and where you’re eating. Although Kuoda puts significant effort into serving up local, organic, and seasonal whenever we can, there will be times when you’ll be choosing your own meals.
For those times, learn what food and beverage is local and in season. That means less time and fuel are used to transport the food to your table. You’ll also be contributing to local farmers and impacting the economy of local communities directly.
5. Shop Smart
The trinkets you find in tourist shops are often made of plastic and mass-manufactured overseas. Both the production and transportation of these goods has a high carbon emissions price tag, which means you should avoid them at all costs.
Instead, buy your souvenirs from local artisans and craftspeople. You’ll reduce your carbon footprint and stimulate local economies at the same time. Ask any of our Kuoda guides where the best places to find souvenirs are and they’ll be sure to point you in this more sustainable direction.
6. Certified Tour Operators
If you’re having your trip planned for you and you’re trying to be more environmentally conscious, then you need to be sure you’re working with a travel company that keeps those desires in mind. Only companies that have committed to reducing their impact on the environment will work with tour operators, hosts, and other facilities that also hold those values dear.
Reduce Your Carbon Footprint with Kuoda
If you plan your trip with Kuoda, rest assured that you’re working with a company that cares. Besides carefully selecting who we work with on every customized trip, we’re a carbon neutral company, which means we’ve reduced out carbon footprint to zero. We’ve accomplished this through a combination of efficiency measures in-house as well as supporting external emission reduction products.
So, when you’re ready for your next luxury vacation, and you want to do it in an environmentally friendly way, be sure to contact us to get customizing.