Mapping our carbon footprints

Living in cities is good for the planet. Living near cities, not so much

By Alison Pearce Stevens, 10:25 AM January 27, 2014

How densely packed your neighborhood is can affect the health of our planet, a new study finds.

Scientists measured the impact that people have on the environment using a “yardstick” that they call a carbon “footprint.” That footprint reflects the amount of carbon dioxide — a greenhouse gas — that is spewed into the atmosphere as a result of someone’s daily activities. Carbon footprints tend to be low for city dwellers. Living in a suburb outside a city, however, can turn that footprint into a...

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