1.5-Degree Lifestyles: Carbon Footprint Project

About the Project

1.5-Degree Lifestyle Project is an action- and policy-oriented research project implemented in a collaboration between Finland and Japan, investigating the impacts of consumer lifestyle on climate change and the potential contributions of lifestyle changes to the 1.5-degree aspirational target of the Paris Agreement. The project examines the carbon footprints of various elements of lifestyles – what to eat, where to live, and how to move – from the consumption perspective. It proposes an indicator of “lifestyle carbon footprints,” which represents the global impacts of our lifestyles on climate change, with per-capita long-term targets to interpret the Paris Agreement in terms of our daily lifestyles.

The project is formulated as action research – a combination of scientific research and engagement with actual households and stakeholders. It has been developing a prototype tool for assessing lifestyle carbon footprints, encouraging lifestyle changes of citizens, and identifying the roles of stakeholders to facilitate the shift towards 1.5-degree lifestyles. The project has been engaging with actual households to understand the benefits and obstacles of low-carbon lifestyles.

Currently, our case studies are mainly on Finland and Japan, with additional analysis on Brazil, China, and India. We aim at expanding our case studies to other countries, covering different geographic and climate conditions, culture, and economic conditions. You can find up-to-date findings of our research from the publication page and from our latest press release.

Research Findings

The project has launched a series of publications summarising the results of our research. Our research demonstrates that changes in consumption patterns and dominant lifestyles are a critical and integral part of the solutions package for addressing climate change. The study analyses scientific emission scenarios and case studies from Finland and Japan, China, Brazil, and India, and proposes long-term targets for individuals’ lifestyle carbon footprints by 2030-2050, as well as low-carbon options that citizens and society can adopt.

The main technical report 1.5-degree Lifestyles: Targets and Options for Reducing Lifestyle Carbon Footprints is a unique analysis of the implications of the Paris Agreement from a lifestyle perspective, whereas most existing studies predominantly focused on production- and technology-based solutions. It establishes a first-ever global per-capita lifestyle carbon footprint target by 2030-2050 with explicit linkage to the 1.5-degree target of the Paris Agreement. It proposes an indicator of “lifestyle carbon footprint,” a consumption-based greenhouse gas accounting used for establishing targets, examining current status, and identifying solutions. The comprehensive series of analyses focus on the climate impacts of household lifestyles and can be further expanded to countries beyond the selected case studies.

Latest Blog Posts

1.5-Degree Lifestyles Report Published

If the world is to keep climate change at manageable levels before the middle of the century, changes in lifestyles are not only inevitable, but would need to be radical, and start immediately. Considering current consumption levels, citizens in many developed countries would have to cut their lifestyle carbon footprints by about 80-90% or more, […]