This brand-new household environmental calculator is the first of its kind — it shows not only the carbon but also energy, water, wastewater, trash, and stormwater runoff footprints of your home and lifestyle. In addition, it recommends projects based on your specific inputs that can save you money, reduce your environmental impact, or in many cases both at the same time!
The Impact Calculator also calculates a score called the Low Impact Living Index™, or LILI™, that encapsulates in one number your overall environmental footprint. It allows comparisons to other homes near you or across the country. The Impact Calculator and LILI combined provide you with a clear roadmap to a greener home and lifestyle.
** Make sure to register when you use the calculator – that way you can save your customized results and re-visit them in the future to get more low impact living ideas and track your progress. Here are some examples of what you can do with the calculator:
- – Estimate how many offsets you need for your entire carbon footprint, your home only, one or all of your cars, and air travel (all separately);
- – Finally see what how much simple projects such as turning down the temperature of your hot water heater or installing a low-flow showerhead will truly save based on your home;
- – Determine how much a solar PV (electric) system would cost for 100% of your electricity, AND also how much less it would cost after first doing projects like installing CFL or LED lighting or a new refrigerator;
- – Examine how much a graywater system would cost for your existing needs, OR how much less it would cost after first installing low-flow water fixtures and appliances;
- – Figure out what projects give you the most “bang for your green buck”!
We will add new projects to the calculator each month. Very soon we will add a project that shows whether wind power makes sense near you, and also the benefits of using power strips that automatically shut all of the power off when you aren’t using your TV or computer.
Read on to learn more, or click here to get started!
Step 1: Calculate your household’s environmental impacts
By just entering your ZIP code and home size, the LIL Environmental Impact Calculator tells you what your impact is based on regional default values. You can then customize the inputs based on your home, and in no more than a few minutes you can have a customized profile that reflects the specifics of your home. Your LILI tells you how you rank relative to a typical home in your region (LILI = 100). Get a 50 and you’re doing great, but a 200 means you have quite a bit of work to do!
Step 2: Review Green Home and Lifestyle Projects
Based on your inputs, the Environmental Impact Calculator recommends a set of projects that make sense for you. The project savings estimates (both environmental and financial) are customized to your home inputs and regional climate, prices and rebates. You can select projects to see how they would affect your overall environmental impact. Once you’ve decided to do one, each project has a list of products and services, specific to your area, that help you get started. When you finish a project, check it off and watch your LILI go down!
3. Save Your Projects and Your Profile
You can also save your profile and revisit it later. This means that you can use it as your green home checklist, and you can see what improvements you have achieved through time.
And, we plan on adding 2-3 new projects a month, so each month you can come back to see whether new projects make sense for you.