How to Lower your Carbon Footprint with Jeremy Casebeer
Jeremy Casebeer is a professional beach volleyball player working to scale climate solutions and protect our oceans.
One goal I’ve been working towards in my personal life is lowering my carbon footprint. I’ve learned that the food you eat, how you travel, and what you buy make up the bulk of your footprint.
Rather than vowing to never eat meat again, never fly again, and stop buying things - I’ve tried to make realistic changes that reduce my footprint, help me live a better/healthier life, and support companies that share my values and are working towards systemic change.
The changes I make are not revolutionary, but they are also not overwhelming. I’ve shifted towards a plant-based diet and now enjoy cooking tasty vegetables. I also have been swapping burritos and burgers for more salads. A few simple swaps and I feel better, perform better, and save money from buying less meat. That’s a win-win with co-benefits.
Travel is trickier because some people have to drive to the store, work, school, etc. Walking or biking when you can makes a difference and is also a good way to get outside and move a bit. Flying usually adds the most to people’s footprints. The best way to lower your footprint is through direct flights and combining trips when possible. Plus, it is always better to avoid frustrating layovers and missed connections. To offset my flights to tournaments, I purchase verified carbon offsets to account for the emissions from my travel (it’s surprisingly affordable).
We live in a capitalist society and we’re not going back to hunter-gatherer days anytime soon - we all buy things. Deciding if I really need something and how much I’ll use it is a helpful filter before buying. It also helps me make a decision to buy something if I agree with the mission and purpose of a brand.
I’m at the beach daily for 9 months out of the year and my skin takes a beating. When looking for a skincare regimen, I knew I wanted and needed something that actually works. So when I discovered Caldera + Lab, a plant-based, B-Corp certified brand, with 5 other certifications, I knew I would choose them. They run their business with our community and the environment top of mind.
Making changes isn’t easy. But it also doesn’t have to be impossible. Rather than being bogged down by perfection, ask ‘What’s the next best step?’. Reflect on your actions and keep moving forward.