Interesting Green Facts

Here are just a few “good to know” facts that I have discovered during my research and writing projects.

  • The US has approximately 5 percent of the world’s population and uses 25 percent of the world’s natural resources.
  • The US uses three times as much water per person than the world average.
  • The US uses almost 25 percent of the world’s energy.
  • The US is the world’s largest single emitter of carbon dioxide from fossils fuels, creating 25 percent of all global emissions. (Carbon dioxide is one of the major greenhouse gases linked to climate change.)
  • Ecological Debt day gets earlier every year: 1987 – December 19; 2007 – October 6 (This is the day the of the year that the human population has used up all the resources that it could replenish in one year)
  • We spend $110 billion on home energy costs each year (DOE)
  • Shower heads manufactured before 1992 provide about 5 gallons of water per minute. Since then, government has required a deduction to 2.5 gallons per minute and some low-flow models take the flow rate down even lower.
  • 245 million tons of solid waste is generated every year: 4.5 pounds per person every day. (34 % paper, 13% yard trimmings, 12% food scraps, 12% plastics, the rest is a mixture of metal, rubber, glass, textiles, wood, and other items) One third of this is recycled or composted. Two thirds of total household waste can be recycled.
  • You use a quarter less fuel at 50 mph than you do at 70 mph.
  • On average it should take about 4 acres of land to sustain one person for a lifetime. Americans need about 20 acres of land to support our current lifestyles.
  • For every kilowatt-hour of energy that we use, 2 lbs of CO2 emissions are released into the atmosphere.
  • It takes 36 calories of fossil fuel energy to grow and ship 1 calorie of iceberg lettuce.

  • Source: Yvonne Jeffery. Green Living for Dummies. Hooboken:Wiley Publishing, 2008

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