Michele Norris from NPR continues the Climate Connections series on China with an investigation into the carbon footprint of an upper-middle class Chinese family from Beijing. The report compares the Chinese family’s carbon footprint with the carbon footprint of an environmentally conscientious American family from North Carolina. Click here to listen to the full story.
Emissions-wise, the Shengs stack up pretty well against the Sheppards, a couple from North Carolina with two young children who took the carbon challenge last May. The Sheppards produce about 14 metric tons of carbon dioxide a year — enough to fill about nine hot-air balloons. Their emissions were about 40 percent lower than the average North Carolina family — until they added in their air travel. With air travel, the Sheppards account for nearly 27 metric tons of carbon emissions per year.