The number of Internet-based carbon calculators that estimate personal carbon footprints has been growing in recent years.
This article, from Kirsten Gram-Hanssen & Toke Haunstrup Christensen of the Danish Building Research Institute, discusses the roles that these calculators can play in changing everyday practices and how users evaluate them. The study builds on results from a questionnaire survey and focus groups with users of a Danish Internet-based carbon calculator developed in 2009, the year of the Climate Summit in Copenhagen, when climate change was prominent on the political agenda.
The article suggests designing Internet-based carbon calculators that actively engage users in collective actions instead of primarily presenting individualistic interventions. It shows that users are different with respect to which of their everyday practices they feel able or inclined to change, with air travel being the practice that, by far, they are least willing to alter.
Via Stephane Bilodeau, Hans De Keulenaer