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Our 2007/08 carbon footprint

Christian Aid knows all too well the impact climate change has on poor communities around the world. That’s why we have publicly committed to cutting our own carbon footprint by at least 5% a year.

So we are pleased to report that we reduced our carbon emissions in 2007/08 by 13%.  

As the chart* below shows, we have been reducing the carbon emissions produced by our UK, Ireland and overseas offices year-on-year since 2005-06. 

carbon footprint 07/08 bar chart

But, although we are proud of our reduction so far, we will continue to identify ways of reducing our carbon emissions still further. A closer look at last year will show that there is more scope for cutting back.


This past year we focused on the carbon impacts of paper use – the largest single contributor to our emissions in 2006/07. This included paper used in our offices as well as our publications.

We have now shifted a significant proportion of paper materials from virgin pulp to recycled sources. The result has been a 37% drop in carbon emissions from paper compared to 2006/07.

We have also reduced our consumption of paper by almost one-third.


Air travel is now the biggest single contributing factor, making up about 45% of our total carbon footprint.

As we work in around 50 countries, long-distance travel is a necessary part of our business, enabling us to monitor and support our partner organisations’ work.

We have also been through a process of shifting much of our programme work to overseas based offices, which has led to an large increase in both long and short haul air travel as the organisation adjusts.

Reducing the carbon emissions resulting from air travel is now a priority in our environmental management and we hope that over time we can make significant improvements.


Energy use across Christian Aid’s offices including electricity, gas, heating oil and generator fuel is responsible for just over 7% of our carbon footprint.

We have made important strides in reducing the emissions resulting from our electricity consumption. After switching six of our offices to renewably sourced electricity, we have halved our carbon emissions in this area. 

We aim to extend this contract to all leased offices where we have control over suppliers, and work with landlords where we do not. We are continuing to improve energy efficiency in our offices, benefiting from both energy and cost savings.

Our carbon footprint 07/08 pie chart

* As our data collection and methods of calculating our carbon footprint improve each year, the figures in the comparative table have been adjusted to show our emissions on a like-for-like basis.  

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