Carbon footprints: what makes them high or low?

Do you know what your carbon footprint is? Our lifestyle, what we eat, how we travel and our homes all play a part in how much we impact the earth.

The average person in the UK has a carbon footprint of around 10 tonnes per year(1), which would fill about 24 million balloons.(2) 

We interviewed three people to demonstrate what can make a carbon footprint high or low.

Unsurprisingly, Tom’s carbon footprint is quite small and below the national average.

His proactive, responsible attitude to low-carbon living makes a big difference to the amount of carbon his lifestyle uses. However, his reliance on air travel for work shows significantly in his results, inflating his score.

Because Danielle needs her car to get around and has to fly for work, she finds it difficult to be green. Her reliance on fossil fuels for commuting and working abroad mean that her carbon footprint score is above the UK average. She could bring this down by carpooling or using public transport rather than commuting in her car.

She could also reduce her carbon footprint by thinking about how her family use energy at home. Switching to a 100% low-carbon tariff like Blue+Price Protection, turning off TVs and other standby appliances at the plug and eating less meat would all help to reduce her impact on the earth.


Laura’s carbon footprint is the lowest. There are many reasons for Laura's low carbon footprint, the biggest is her lack of air travel and the fact she is very conscious of her home energy tariff.

Her love of cooking reduces her carbon footprint further – as she’s not getting takeaways and reducing, reusing and recycling as much as possible.


Looking for a low-carbon tariff?

Our Blue tariff range uses electricity 100% backed by low-carbon sources. So you can be sure the energy you're using at home is low-carbon.

Check out our Blue tariff range on our tariff comparison page. We have three different Blue options, so there's one to suit you.

Not ready to change tariff?

If you're not ready to change tariff, but want to know how you can be more energy efficient at home, check out our energy efficiency tips and tricks.