Go Zero Metrics and Calculations

Your estimated annual carbon dioxide footprint is the sum of the carbon dioxide that is produced by your home energy use, auto transportation and air travel. The total number of pounds is converted to tons. On average, trees planted as part of the Fund’s Go Zero program sequester approximately one ton of CO2 equivalent over a 100-year period. Donations to Go Zero support land acquisition, tree seeding purchase, planting and management of new forestland.

To ensure accuracy and consistency, The Conservation Fund uses averages and information provided by the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Go Zero Calculator Metrics

The Go Zero calculator requires a minimum of information from you because it relies on state and national averages. Here are the averages and conversion rates used:

Electricity

Carbon Coefficient: 1.52 pounds CO2/kilowatt-hour CO2 Source: www.epa.gov.

Average electricity use by household type source: www.eia.gov.

Natural Gas

Carbon Coefficient: 11.71 pounds CO2 per therm (117.080 pounds CO2 per million Btu) CO2 Source: Energy Information Administration Voluntary Reporting of Greenhouse Gases Program fuel emissions coefficients Average natural gas use by household type source: www.eia.gov.

Home Heating Oil

Carbon Coefficient: 22.39 pounds CO2/gallon CO2 Source: Energy Information Administration Voluntary Reporting of Greenhouse Gases Program fuel emissions coefficients Average home heating oil (fuel oil) use by household type source: www.eia.gov.

Propane

CO2 Coefficient: 12.65 lbs CO2 /gallon CO2 Source: Energy Information Administration Voluntary Reporting of Greenhouse Gases Program fuel emissions coefficients Average home propane (liquid propane gas) use by household type source: www.eia.gov

Waste & Recycling

Waste CO2 Coefficient: 2.8 lbs of CO2/day/individual Recycling CO2 Coefficient: 1.57 lbs of CO2/day/individual The EPA estimates an average household of one person creates 1,021 pounds of CO2 from waste each year. If you recycle, the EPA estimates that average decreases to 574 pounds of CO2 from waste each year. CO2 Source: EPA Household Emissions Calculator

Auto Transportation

CO2 Coefficient: 19.64 pounds CO2/gallon CO2 Source: Energy Information Administration Voluntary Reporting of Greenhouse Gases Program fuel emissions coefficients.

Air Travel

CO2 Coefficient: 0.61 lbs of CO2 per mile flown Air travel definitions and factors are from the EPA May 2008 Climate Leaders Greenhouse Gas Core Modules Guidance CO2 Source: www.epa.gov

The carbon dioxide footprint is the sum of all the above calculations (in lbs), resulting in an estimate of the carbon dioxide that is produced by home energy use, auto transportation, and air travel. The total number of pounds is converted to short tons. The cost to plant and monitor each tree is approximately $10.00.

For a complete list of formulas, calculations, and sources, download the Go Zero metric sheet.