The Second Annual Earth Day Index

Happy Earth Day! Last year I did an Earth Day Index for my company newsletter, and reposted it here. This is the second iteration; I’m a little looser on citing the sources. They’re at the bottom, but not keyed to particular facts. One late addition: the fact about airline travel comes from the excellent blog, No Impact Man.

1,859
pounds of air pollution the average American contributes to the atmosphere each year

1.08
pounds of greenhouse gases generated per person per mile of airplane travel

1:1
climate change contribution comparison between one round-trip, long-haul flight and an entire year of driving

45
number of cartoonists running Earth Day-themed strips on April 22

37,000
number of empty soft drink bottles thrown away in the US each minute

15
number of times a trail of ATM transaction slips generated in one year would circle the equator

70
number of garbage cans of waste needed to manufacture the goods that end up in one garbage can of post-consumer waste

88
pounds of petroleum jelly used during the London Marathon to prevent chaffing, blistering and “runner’s nipple”

5
percentage of light bulbs sold that are compact fluorescents

1,000,000
emissions equivalent, in cars, saved if every US household replaced one incandescent light bulb with a compact fluorescent bulb

1
average cost, in pennies, of a gallon of tap water

1,000
maximum cost, in pennies, of a gallon of bottled water

1,000
distance, in miles, a current model car would have to travel to emit the same amount of volatile organic compounds as cooking four normal-sized hamburgers in a fast-food restaurant

Sources:

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