The short answer is it's A LOT!
A whole heap of carbon emissions are hidden - sometimes called embodied carbon* - in pretty much everything we humans buy, use or do.
It's everything from the raw materials that make up the thing, how + where the thing was production as well as how it's been transported to reach you. Each stage and every single element creates emissions.
It's not possible to reduce it all to zero right now. The carbon in all our stuff isn't obvious. Knowing where it all is helps you make choices to live your best climate life.
We know, we know. You didn't choose for it to be there. Neither did we. But it is.
As the world decarbonizes* in some areas the amount of these hidden emissions will (hopefully) reduce over time. We're a long way from that being true generally.
In the meantime, while that is happening, we think it's important that it's more obvious to everyone what planet-heating emissions were released when something we buy, use or do gets created.
As part of our Carbon Removal Fund (that anyone can j oin!) we've dug into the Life Cycle Assessments* of a load of everyday things. From food and clothes, to tech and travel plus a load in between.
Drop by this page all about hidden emissions in our stuff to explore further.
You can also join our carbon removal fund to get rid of some (or all!) of your emissions as a subscription or for a one-time purchase. It's our ready-made portfolio of high quality CDR that actually works in the way we need to truly take on the climate crisis.
If hidden emissions in everyday items is the kind of thing you'd like to explore further, there's also loads more detail about embodied emissions in our free 14-day Intro to Climate.
You can start every Monday and everyone is invited to this party!
Have hope, make progress 💚
For explanations of all the terms in italics with asterisks* check out our Climate Buzzword Dictionary
Our ready-made, curated, portfolio of high quality carbon dioxide removal (CDR) solutions is live. It aims for the highest permanence-for-the-$-per-tonne that we can find.
We're excited to be working with an inspiring group of global CDR companies taking the fight to the Climate Crisis. They're doing amazing work that holds a tonne - pun intended - of promise.