March 17, 2020 to now is how long I've been working from home for NBC Bay Area as part of our effort to maintain county compliance for travel and workplace guidelines.
It was interesting to use this time to take a closer look at how this era of telecommuting had a fairly significant impact on reducing emissions around the Bay Area. In my case, that was nearly 20 tons less CO2 from a year before.
It was a bit surprising to see how our energy use at home did go up as our work-from-home office spaces popped up and our two twin boys in transitional kindergarten continued to do their classes via Zoom, as many others around the Bay Area did as well. More time at home led to more energy use through the day that offset some of those transportation reduction gains.
Most of it was tied to transportation, and indeed that is the leading primary source for carbon emissions -- refining/business emissions second -- so it wasn't a surprise when two cars averaging about 20,000 miles less on the road would lead to a quantifiable impact.
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