The Moment I Became Climate Neutral

Last Friday, my carbon footprint dropped from 7 tons per year to 0. That is like saving 6 trees or over 200 square feet of Arctic ice every year.

For those who are not familiar with the terminology, that is okay. I was like you not too long ago. A person’s carbon footprint is the amount of carbon dioxide produced directly or indirectly in support of the life that person leads. When a person has a carbon footprint of zero, that means they are carbon neutral. In other words, it means that their impact on Earth’s atmosphere is zero. It is neutral.

It took me a few years to get my carbon footprint down to 7 tons per year in the first place. It used to be closer to the American average of 19.5. We are lucky that what is good for Earth is often good for us too. I started doing things that were good for Earth and good for me, mostly because they were good for me. I did not know much about the climate crisis back then.

I walked to work. I kept my electric bill down. I tried to buy things less often and more locally. I lived in minimalist apartments in San Francisco and New York. I even started eating vegan during the week. These choices made me healthier and happier while lowering my carbon footprint. Still, they did not make me carbon neutral. I did not think that was possible.

Then I found Wren.

Wren made it look easy to go carbon neutral. It quickly turned out to be even easier than it looked.

Wren helped me calculate my carbon footprint with some simple questions. Then it showed me how much I could contribute on a monthly basis to any of a few trustworthy projects that would offset my carbon footprint to zero. I chose to support a community tree planting project in East Africa. Like all the other things that are good for Earth and good for us, the tree planting project is good for Earth and good for the people involved. I committed less than $6 per month. That was the moment I became carbon neutral.

Some people say the climate crisis is too large a problem for any individual to make a difference. Those people must not have read about The Civil Rights Movement. They must have missed the #MeToo Movement too. They must not know Greta Thunberg, the 17-year-old environmental activist from Sweden who stood up to the leaders of the world and last year became the youngest ever Time Person of the Year.

We cannot all be the next Greta Thunberg, but we can all join the global movement to end the climate crisis. We can all do things that are better for Earth and better for us. We can all become climate neutral as individuals, and then as humanity. We can all help save Earth.

I recommend going to to get started.