More about Carbon Calculations and Computers
Thanks for all your comments and tips. It is good to hear other people’s experiences and to know that I am not the only one who has tried this trip. I wish I could leave already as I am a bit worried that I have not got enough time to get to Singapore for the boat, but there are so many variables there is no point worrying and just hope that it was fated to work out!
Calculating the impact on climate change by various transport modes is a complicated business so there isn't one right answer. There are many variables including:
- Fuel used (eg diesel, petrol, electricity generated by various methods)
- Occupancy of vehicle
- Size and weight of vehicle and size of engine
- Quality and maintenance of engine
- Altitude (The IPCC (INTERGOVERNMENTAL PANEL ON CLIMATE CHANGE) based in Switzerland concludes that emissions from aircraft at altitude result in the total warming effect that is in the range 2-5 times greater than that of CO2 alone. We used a conservative multiple of 2.7 for me)
- Speed of vehicle and route taken
- Road/Track/Weather conditions
- Idling times
So I have decided that it will be a good thing for me to get as much of this information as possible so we can make more accurate assessments when I return (or even whilst I am away what with modern technology). On that note I would just like to say, I hate using computers and the internet as well for the electricity they use and the chemicals used in the processing and leached in the dismantling. When I am at CAT (work) I use the computers there which are all run on renewable resources (sun, wind, water) if I am not at work I use the computer in the community telecentre or library. These are fast computers which mean you can do loads more in the time you use and it means less computers are purchased by individuals in the area. I have no idea where there energy comes from but it is a great community resource. On the journey I will try to use computers as little as possible but I will try and update this blog as much as I can. Oh it is all a balance. Oh yes and just to confirm, I do not have a laptop in my caravan or anywhere else! Nor do I want one.
However the figures are calculated, we know that to live sustainably (i.e for us all to have a hope in hell of there being a planet for our grand-kids to live on!) we have an allowance of 2.5 tonnes of carbon dioxide to emit as we chose each year (see CAT’s Carbon Gym). It is quite hard to hit this target if you fly.
For information on where you can recycle computers once they are knackered look at this good webpage (UK only);
For info. on rail travel in Europe see;
For info. on coach travel in Europe see;
For more informed information about the debate see what George Monbiot wrote earlier this year;
I really need to get some photos to make this all look a bit more interesting, sorry about that, I’m working on it………(This photos (thanks to Tab) reminds me of a lovely day in the snow at home earlier this year)