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Catalyse action: Lifestyle test

Are you a threat or an opportunity? On the way toward the 1.5-degree climate target, knowing your own carbon footprint is the first steppingstone on the way to reducing it. Lifestyle test is an easy carbon footprint calculator that helps individuals understand how to live more sustainable life.

Writer

Emma Hietaniemi

Specialist, Sustainable Everyday Life, Sitra

Published

Our carbon footprint calculator, Lifestyle test, helps individuals assess the environmental impacts of their lifestyles. By answering 27 questions, each respondent can see the size and composition of their carbon footprint and how it compares to the average test taker.

We wanted to create a test that is accessible, as easy to complete as possible and that could even encourage taking action to help the climate for perhaps the first time.

The questions and calculations of the lifestyle test are based on environmental calculations and the consumption of the average Finnish person, as a result of which calculations must be examined separately for each country when introducing the test for local use.

It takes approximately three to five minutes to complete the test. The lifestyle test collects no personal data from those taking the test, but the owner can export the results distribution to learn more about the respondent’s current lifestyle. The test is responsive and fully scalable on every platform, both mobile and desktop.

The lifestyle test is best accompanied by 100 Smart everyday choices list, which shows a selection of tips that will help save money or improve quality of life while reducing carbon footprints. See the add-ons.

Payoffs

  1. An easy way to calculate one’s carbon footprint makes the abstract idea of personal emissions more tangible.
  2. Growing consciousness of our daily climate impact can prompt us into action.
  3. As a product owner you can gain insight into local lifestyles by analysing the test results.

Results – Finland

  • Currently over 1.000.000 people have taken the test.
  • The lifestyle test is also being used in schools as an educational material.
  • The test has been featured in dozens of news articles and morning TV shows.
  • #Lifestyletest has trended on social media platforms and been shared daily amongst people.

What’s needed

All the building blocks of this viral sensation calculator already exist and are licenced under Creative Commons BY 4.0; excel sheets, copytexts and other introductory materials. Now it’s your turn to put together your own regional version of the lifestyle test. Start by downloading the code from GitHub and get going!

Once again, co-operation is the key. Choose reliable partners with whom to localise the calculations and to help with the technical deployment.

Lifestyle test is fully applicable on its own, but it flourishes when it is complemented by other scalable services. The Creative Commons licence allows you to modify the test or develop it even further according to your organisation’s ambitions. The code already fully supports the 100 Smart everyday choices and Sustainable lifestyle planning tool, for example.

 

Download the method as a pdf version: Catalyse action: Carbon footprint calculator (pdf)

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