The Guardian Asks You to Tread Lightly
Last year around this time, Treehugger and Slate invited their readers to take part in their first Green Challenge, an “eight-week carbon diet” with the aim of reducing their readers’ individual CO2 output by 20 percent. They posed an updated challenge this past Spring, and so far more than 30,000 people have participated, together pledging to shed more than 60 million pounds of carbon emissions. Now in its fourth week, the Guardian’s Tread Lightly campaign takes a similar approach, offering a new weekly carbon-reducing challenge for 12 weeks. Switching to energy-efficient lightbulbs was the first pledge, and anyone who has signed up to participate and fulfill at least one pledge has a chance to win a G-Wiz electric car. The move by Guardian is commendable – they launched an entire site for the initiative, featuring energy saving tips, an ecostore, and related articles and information on topics like climate change and ethical living. On the site, pledgers can also track the community’s efforts, how much carbon they’ve cut, and what those savings mean in terms of common energy expenditures (so far, the community has saved the equivalent to 901 average car journeys). So far, though, despite the Guardian’s earnest efforts, the initiative is off to a slow start: fewer than 3,300 readers have signed up, with 742 currently committed to this week’s challenge.