How Green Are You?

Zoe Samuel

Image: Tom Werner/DigitalVision/Getty Images

About This Quiz

Climate change is here, and it's bad: if we don't dramatically cut greenhouse gas emissions in the next decade, we will lock in irreversible change. This doesn't just mean it'll be slightly hotter. It means rising seas swallowing trillions of dollars of wealth. It means drought in the Midwest, Middle East, and swaths of Asia, with deadly heatwaves and wildfires. It means a warmer sea, which means more energy drawn into hurricanes, meaning more destruction and flooding. (If simultaneous droughts and floods are confusing, picture a see-saw; if you push down in one area, you get a backlash someplace else).

Meanwhile, air pollution is already the No. 1 killer on the planet, causing one in six deaths globally. Plastics are endangering ecosystems. Soil degradation is causing risks of global famine. It's not a pretty picture.

That's the bad news. The good news is threefold: first, we have the technology and will to fix it. Second, far from requiring a hair-shirt approach or return to medieval living, fixing it is an investment in jobs, growth, health, reduced inequality and stronger communities. Third, we who care about healing our planet and communities are not alone. That means nobody has to solve all of this on their own.

However, this doesn't mean that individual choices are going to win the day. Sure, flying less, eating less beef, and using less energy helps, but the key is systemic change - and that's where we're much more powerful than we think. Sure, changing the system is much harder than changing a habit, but every time it changes, it makes the good habits easy for all. The upshot is that together, we really can move mountains.

Now that we know what we need to be doing, click through to find out whether you're doing your part!

Do you turn off the lights when you leave the room?

Have you ever undertaken a project to get clean energy for your workplace, church, apartment block, school, etc?

Is your home insulated?

How much economic damage will it do to go to carbon zero energy by 2050?

What do you drive?

If all subsidies were removed, which form of energy is cheapest?

How is your home heated and cooled?

The most ecologically friendly living is dense; it reduces CO2 and protects habitats. What sort of neighborhood do you live in?

It's the simplest way to fight for the planet. Do ​you vote?

Making sure the climate is in regular discussion is an effective tool. How often do you talk about climate change with family and friends?

Systemic change is infinitely more effective than personal change. What's the leading way you've contributed to it?

Have you ever joined a protest or march for the climate?

Are you up to date on basic facts and terminology like ppm, GHGs, "hockey stick," etc.?

If someone you loved was going to buy a home less than 3 feet above sea level, how would you feel about that?

How many children do you have?

Have you adjusted your meat consumption?

Do you eat organic?

Climate solutions have been thoroughly assessed by efficacy. Which, in your view, is the most effective?

Which sector would you say is emitting the most greenhouse gas?

By how much have you reduced your personal carbon footprint in the past year?

What part of climate change worries you most?

Have you personally taken on a climate change skeptic?

If you could pass a single pro-climate law (as opposed to a package such as the Green New Deal), what would you pass?

100 companies are responsible for 70% of emissions. Do you know who they are?

Have you ever adjusted your savings or stock portfolio to a more climate-friendly one?

Who is your climate role model?

When did you first know that climate change is real?

Have you ever boycotted a company because of its climate practices?

How many miles per year do you fly?

When someone claims tackling climate change is expensive, you know this is incorrect. Which argument do you tend to deploy first?

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