12/03/2009 09:06 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Your Three-Step Post-Copenhagen Carbon Diet

Averting the climate crisis may seem like moving a mountain - seemingly impossible with a single shove, but not impossible with a million shovels.

Many of us want politicians to step up and grab the shovels, instead of shoving each other back and forth to see who will have to pay for each individual shovel-full.

Activists flocking to Copenhagen are doing a thousand inventive stunts to ratchet up the message that politicians need to act: dancing for change, and biking for change, and walking all the way from Britain to Brussels to hop the train for Copenhagen for change.

What the efforts share is the green meme. Green is big in all of our minds heading into the Copenhagen COP-15 talks.

While the circus is diverting, the biggest opportunity we all share is the actual ability to, here and now, cut our carbon emissions personally 50%...and save money doing so.

Yes, it seems like an infomercial. No, there aren't any Ginzu knives included with this offer.

The good intent being generated on the streets of Copenhagen just needs big action on the home front.

This doesn't mean ditch the recycling, the reusable shopping bag, or the perfect recycling record. Just realize it adds up to 1% of your carbon dioxide footprint.

So how do we start the high impact post-Hopenhagen carbon diet?

Really, it's just three steps to lose ten tons of carbon - that's half an American's annual emissions.

Graham Hill at Gel 2009 from Gel Conference on Vimeo.

And you'll save a day's worth of time, $1,000, and get better health.

Step 1. Become a weekday vegetarian. That's minus one ton of carbon emissions. It helps your water footprint immensely. It saves you about a dollar a day, and the food choices are fewer, so you actually save a little bit of time. Plus you get to eat as many body parts as you want on weekends - if you are into that.

Step 2. Become a conscious flyer. Go virtually, or avoid, and at least know the approximate carbon emissions of the flights you take. Go direct, it's an emissions saver. And choose your plane, if you can. It makes a difference. All in all, this can strip 5 tons from your annual emissions - and save some significant money.

Step 3. Buy green power. We said we would do it, yet only 7% of us have. This is easy, you can usually do this on the phone. And it will save you 4 tons of carbon a year.

This puts you down to 10 tons of emissions each year. And it's the best bang for the least amount of bucks. This doesn't let the Copenhagen politicians off the hook.

It gets us all pulling in the same direction.

Read more at TreeHugger:
Graham Hill Shows How We Can Halve Our Emissions at GEL Conference
Try a Weekday Vegetarian Diet: Eat Green Food without Taking the Plunge
Vegetarian Diet Could Cut Climate Change Mitigation Costs by 70%, If Enough Of Us Make the Switch
Pack Less, Fly Direct, Stick With Economy: Greener Flying Tips from Terrapass
Greener Flying: Not All Flights Are Created Equal
5 Good Ways to Get Green Power Into Your Home
How to Get: Green Power

For more articles by Graham Hill click here.