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Are Carbon Emissions the Same as Greenhouse Gases?

If you have been paying any attention this century, you have likely heard about “greenhouse gases”. The prevalence of this term has been growing more and more as people become aware of global warming – and how certain human activities are detrimental to the planet.

As individuals dig further and further into the subject of greenhouse gases, they’ll inevitably come across carbon dioxide emissions. However, are these two topics the same, or are they different?

What are greenhouse gases?

A greenhouse gas (GHG) is a heat-absorbing gas that exists within the atmosphere. Due to this, the more this type of gas is present, the more it warms up Earth beyond the level it needs to be. Greenhouse gases are naturally occurring within the planet’s atmosphere, but their levels are increased due to human activities like burning fossil fuels. The result: it leads to climate change and a certain issue known as global warming.

There are various GHGs. The main ones include methane, nitrous oxide, ozone, water vapour, and, importantly, in this case, carbon dioxide.

What is carbon dioxide?

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is an essential gas that’s everywhere. It is in the air, in the products you buy, and in our bodies. A natural amount of CO2 is a necessity, but an imbalance in CO2 is where problems occur.

According to the Contribution of Working Group covered by the Physical Science Basis, carbon makes up 76% of the greenhouse gases that exist. Due to this, it’s easy for people to believe that carbon emissions are the same as greenhouse gases. This is particularly the case when CO2 emissions are used as the basis for ranking other GHGs.

This is the situation with global warming potential (GWP). This is a scale that is used to measure carbon dioxide equivalent gases. CO2 has an index value of 1. Other GHGs are then given a value that indicates the additional warming impact they have when measured against CO2. For instance, nitrous oxide emissions have an index value of 298, which means it results in 298 times more warming than the same amount of CO2 over a 100-year period.

The index value can fluctuate wildly. Methane emissions, the next gas in the GWP chart after CO2, has a value of 25, while sulfur hexafluoride sits at 22,800. Yet even though carbon is expressed in terms that make it the primary focus of greenhouse gases, this natural gas isn’t the only element associated with greenhouse gases.

However, carbon emissions are where both individuals and businesses can make the most difference.

Efforts to reduce carbon emissions

If you want to make a difference for the environment, you’ll be searching for ways to reduce your carbon footprint. The average in the UK is ten tonnes of carbon dioxide per person, and this is made up of aspects like electricity, transportation, and businesses you work with. The latter includes shipping services.

With CO2 emission monitor and removal as part of our services, we can help to reduce your carbon rates when you require logistics services.

Green Leaves Logistics Ltd is a company registered in England and Wales under number 12857778. 

Registered address: 86- 90 Paul Street, London EC2A 4NE, United Kingdom.

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Green Leaves Logistics Ltd is a member of the British International Freight Association (BIFA).

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