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The Nature Conservancy


5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, AP® / College


Science, Social Studies, Earth and Space Sciences, Mathematics, Climate Action

Resource Type

  • Interactive Media

Regional Focus


Calculate Your Carbon Footprint

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  • This interactive carbon footprint calculator provides data for the carbon dioxide and methane emissions associated with travel habits, home energy use, food choices, and shopping habits.
  • Students answer questions about their habits and household to get an estimate of the emissions produced from daily life.

Teaching Tips


  • This calculator provides a number of different metrics that can be changed and customized to see the relative impact of different choices on carbon emissions.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students will need access to a computer with Internet access to use the calculator tool.
  • Younger students will likely need to ask a parent or guardian about some of the information in the questions to complete the assessment.


  • Economics and social studies classes could discuss ways to incentivize choices that reduce carbon emissions and provide more equal access to sustainable food, transportation, and energy.
  • Math classes could use this tool to calculate which actions are are most effective at reducing emissions.
  • Science and biology classes could use this calculator to see the many sources of greenhouse gas emissions and use this foodprint calculator to get more details on emissions from food.
  • Other helpful resources to consider using include an StC lesson on foodprints, an StC lesson on carbon footprints, and this table of solutions to climate change.
Scientist Notes
This is a survey that evaluates individual's carbon footprint. The tool contains well-structured questions to elicit relevant data at household level to help reduce carbon footprint. This tool is recommended for teaching.

This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-4 Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth's systems.
      • MS-ESS3-5 Ask questions to clarify evidence of the factors that have caused the rise in global temperatures over the past century.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Economics
      • D2.Eco.1.6-8 Explain how economic decisions affect the well-being of individuals, businesses, and society.
      • D2.Eco.1.9-12 Analyze how incentives influence choices that may result in policies with a range of costs and benefits for different groups.
  • Related Resources


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