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Survey measures individual's impact on environment



An online survey from Earth Day Network attempts to determine an individual's "ecological footprint," the effect one person's actions and routines have on the environment.

"(The survey) takes a look at an individual's consumption of resources, and it projects how much acreage would be devoted to producing those resources in a sustainable manner at that individual's consumption level," said Fenton Rood, director of Waste Systems Planning at the Oklahoma Department of Environmental Quality.

To determine an individual's ecological footprint, the survey poses questions about one's everyday routines:
" "On average, how far do you travel on public transportation each week?"
" "How often do you eat animal-based products?"
" "Compared to people in your neighborhood, how much waste do you generate?"

It then scores the answers in terms of how many acres of land would be needed if every person lived in the same manner.

"The whole notion is to ask yourself how many acres are devoted to me maintaining my consumption patterns, and is it possible for everybody on the planet to live like I do. And the physical answer to that question is no," Rood said.

Rood will discuss the survey at the sixth annual Oklahoma Sustainability Network Conference, to be held Friday and Saturday at the National Weather Center, 120 David L. Boren Blvd. in Norman. "Chris Willard



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