FAQs

Contents

About Giki Zero

  • What is Giki Zero?

    Giki Zero is your step by step guide to a lighter footprint on the planet. It will help you discover your footprint, find steps to reduce it and celebrate your successes.

  • What’s the aim?

    The aim is to for everyone who uses Giki Zero to take new steps to cut their environmental footprint. At the moment the average carbon footprint in the UK is 9 tonnes and by 2030 this needs to be 2.5 tonnes. It’s a big task but Giki Zero can help you with the steps you need to take to get there.

  • How does it work?

    Giki Zero helps you understand your personal footprint which is an important first step in discovering way to reduce it. It does this by guiding you through a series of easy to understand questions that will estimate the overall impact that you have where you can provide as little, or as much, information as you want.

    You will then be able to see your environmental footprint and understand how your home, transport, food, purchases and services all contribute. You can also see how planting trees can give you a boost as you look to reduce your footprint over time.

    With better information about your footprint you can then choose the steps which suit your lifestyle and budget to help reduce your impact over time. Decide on the steps you want to take, rated on impact and ease, and Giki Zero will help you turn those commitments into climate positive changes.

  • Why do it?

    There’s no sugar coating this one. Global carbon emissions are still rising, the world is getting hotter, animals are under threat and people around the world are already being affected by floods, droughts, fires and rising sea levels. We all need to live more sustainably and move towards Net Zero.

  • What are the key benefits?

    You’ll be finding new steps you can take to reduce your carbon footprint. At the same time you’ll also find steps that can save you money, improve your health, protect animals, and reduce plastic use. You’ll also be able to share what you are doing with colleagues, friends and your family.

  • How long will Giki Zero take me to do?

    Creating a sustainable life takes time. We’ve got until 2030 to dramatically cut our environmental impact and so we expect Giki Zero to take people months, and perhaps a few years, to get to the point where they are leading a sustainable lifestyle. However, because it takes time it also means that Giki Zero is not another app where we need to be constantly checking back in to measure your progress. You can take your time, make good decisions, and see you impact reduce month by month.

  • Who is it for?

    Everyone in the UK! Giki Zero helps anyone who is wondering what they can do about environmental issues such as climate change, animal conservation and pollution but does not know where to start. It’s also designed for people who are already making changes to live more sustainably but who want more ideas to help them go further. By signing up you’ll be able to start doing whatever you can, as soon as you can, to help protect the environment and animals.

  • Why do I need Giki Zero?

    There is an enormous amount of data available about the impact of our everyday actions and consumption on the world around us, but most of this is too detailed and complex for most of us to understand easily or be able to use in our everyday decision making. The tool aims to show information and steps to people in a simple and intuitive interface, displaying the relative impacts of different activities or lifestyle choices. The hope is that this will help people work towards an overall lifestyle footprint that is compatible with the aims of the Paris Climate Change Agreement to limit average global warming to 1.5 degrees centigrade.

  • How often should I be using Giki Zero?

    Moving to a more sustainable life takes time. We think it’s best to check in every week just to have a look at the steps you’re taking, see whether there are any news ones you are ready with and to see how your Giki score is doing. There’s no need to check in every day – this is a marathon not a sprint!

  • Have people used it to cut their footprints?

    Yes! Here are a few examples of what people have done so far and what they’ve said about Giki Zero

      Scarlett

      Scarlett started shopping at her local market instead of the supermarket. It was close to her house, so she could walk instead of taking the bus, which saved her travel fare and she found that if she got there late in the day and befriended the market stall owner she could get a great deal, often making her purchases cheaper than if they were bought at the supermarket!

      At home she started to make sure she switched off her appliances. “For me, the main culprits were my phone and laptop.” Now she doesn’t leave them charging overnight and switches them off when 100% charged.

      One of the biggest steps Scarlett took was swapping to a green energy tariff. She chose Green Network Energy and the switch was very easy – it took just 15 minutes and covers gas and electricity. So far it’s been simple, in fact she hasn’t noticed any change.

      Molli

      “I’m far more conscious of the little things – for example choosing healthier snacks and how much new clothing I buy were factors I hadn’t really taken into consideration in relation to sustainability. I’ve also chatted more to my friends about it.”

      “Giki Zero breaks down the steps to a more sustainable lifestyle and makes it feel a lot more tangible and achievable. It also de-myths the perception that, as students, sustainability is unaffordable and unobtainable.”

      Jules

      “What Giki Zero showed me was how much of my carbon footprint is still accounted for by my car use. Consequently I have pledged to commute to work by bike over 50 times this year. I don't think this is an option in the app yet, but it was definitely the app that got me to think about it. It also cemented my intention to offset as much as my carbon as I can (while still trying to reduce it) by planting more trees.”

      Alice

      “Seeing just how much of total footprint is derived from flying on Giki has finally encouraged to act on this. Any travelling I have booked since then has been (where possible) by bus or train. For example in June I will be travelling by coach and then train to rural France for a wedding, and I must say I am really looking forward to this. People need to start considering the getting there as part of the adventure!”

Dashboard

  • What is a carbon footprint?

    A carbon footprint is an estimate of the amount of carbon (more specifically the amount of carbon dioxide equivalents) that a person emits each year based on their lifestyle. All of us have a carbon footprint and in the UK almost all of us need to reduce it dramatically over the next decade. It’s important because the amount of carbon we all emit is directly related to the amount of global warming and climate change that we will see.

  • How do you calculate carbon footprints?

    Many of the decisions we make have a carbon footprint. We look at over 30 different areas, from electricity usage to financial services and from diet to miles driven, in order to work out the carbon impact of each of these decisions. We can then add up the impact from all these different areas to provide an estimate of a person’s overall carbon footprint. See our extensive methodology for a complete guide to how we do it.

  • Why is the target 2.5 tonnes?

    The world is already warming and the climate is changing. However, limiting global warming to 1.5C will significantly reduce the risks and impacts of climate change. 2.5 tonnes is important because it is the amount of carbon that the average person globally should be emitting by 2030 that is consistent with 1.5C of warming. It is based on estimates from the UN about the amount of carbon budget we all have left.

  • Why is the target not net zero?

    By 2050, and probably much earlier, all individuals, companies and countries need to be at net zero. As a result that is the long term target everyone should be aiming for. However, we’ll get there step by step and so the first huge step is focusing on where we need to get to in the next few years and then we can go further.

  • What is my Giki score?

    Your Giki score is intended to give you a single way to track your progress towards a sustainable life. It’s calculated by taking into account your overall carbon footprint, new steps that you are trying, steps that you’ve successfully taken and the amount of information you’ve enter into Giki Zero. Your carbon footprint is the most important contributor to the score. Aim for a score of 1000 to be a planet saver leading a sustainable life.

  • What does my time remaining represent?

    The UN have calculated the global carbon budget that we have left if we’re going to limit warming to 1.5C. We’ve worked out how long we’d have left if everyone had the same footprint as you.

Steps

  • What are steps?

    Steps are everyday actions that you can take to reduce your environmental impact. They are rated on ease and impact so you can pick the steps that work for your budget, the time you have and the areas that you’re currently most interested in. Try starting out with a small step to get started.

Footprints

  • Why do I need to add information to Giki Zero?

    The more information that you add to Giki Zero the better we can estimate what your environmental footprint is. This will help you see which areas are the most important to focus on. Entering information also helps to raise awareness of the impact of all the decisions we make in day-to-day life.

  • I am a student what data should I put in?

    For students information about the gas and electricity usage in rented accommodation and halls of residence may be hard to come by. Therefore we suggest that you enter information that you have based on your home address. However, it’s still really important to encourage your landlord to take many of the steps that are highlighted in Giki Zero such as switching to renewable electricity.

  • I work from home, does that make a difference?

    If you work from home then technically some of your footprint (e.g for the heating and electricity you use) should be included in your company’s carbon footprint rather than yours. Therefore if you want to you could adjust your heating and electricity down for the amount of time spent at home that is working. At the same time make sure your company is including it in their own calculations so it does not get left out.

  • Should I enter data based on my lifestyle during the Covid lockdown?

    Ideally not. Please enter what you expect to do in normal times. This will help give you a more accurate estimate to work from.

Households

  • Why do I need to include people from my household?

    Whilst some information (such as what you eat) is personal there are some things that you share with other members of your household (such as electricity and gas usage). By including people from your household we can spread the impact of these over everyone so you get a more accurate estimate of your personal footprint. All members of a household have access to view, and update, all information for other people in the household.

  • How is information shared with my household?

    Any household data that you enter will be assigned to all members of your household, including any future household members who are added. Examples of household data include information on electricity usage, gas usage, pets, personal care items and household waste. The assignment of household data to other household members will remain as household data even after your profile is no longer active.

Your account

  • How do I sign up?

    Go to the Sign Up page and enter your email and the password you want to use. That’s it. Giki Zero will then take you through a few questions to get started. You’ll also receive an email so you can confirm that you want to set up your account.

  • How do I change the settings for my account?

    Follow the link to Account from your dashboard to change your settings. Here you can change your password, delete your account and unsubscribe from the regular updates you receive about the service such as the monthly summary.

  • Can I delete my account?

    Yes. Go to the Account page on your dashboard. Here you’ll find the ability to delete your account. This cannot be undone.

  • How do I unsubscribe from the regular updates?

    Follow the link to Account from your dashboard to change your settings. Here you can unsubscribe from any of the regular updates.

Giki Zero Pro

  • Who is Giki Zero Pro for?

    Giki Zero Pro is for any organisation who wants to help their members, staff or students to understand, track and lighten their footprint on the planet.

  • How do I find my team leaderboard?

    You can find your leaderboard by clicking on the Your teams link. Click on the burger menu next to your avatar to find it.

  • Is my data shared with my organisation?

    Data that is included on leaderboards is shared with the organisation you are a member of. This includes your Giki Score, your carbon footprint, the number of steps you have taken (as well as their ease and impact) and the number of steps you have successfully completed (as well as their ease and impact). You can see this data on the teams page. All other data is anonymised.

  • As an administrator how do I invite someone to a team?

    Click on the Your teams link in the burger menu next to your avatar. Scroll down and select the team you want to add someone to. You will then see the Add Team button.

  • As an administrator how do I set up a team?

    Click on the Your teams link in the burger menu next to your avatar. Scroll down and select Add a team.

  • As an administrator how do I invite other admins?

    Click on the Your teams link in the burger menu next to your avatar. Scroll down and select Add an admin.

  • Should I enter information about my work flights?

    Giki Zero is a tool for individuals but if you want to include your work flights then you can do that to see what difference it makes. If you’re a Pro user then talk to your team or organisation leader about whether it’s something that you are doing across your organisation.

  • Is Giki Zero for company carbon footprints?

    Giki Zero is focused on the personal footprints that we all have. For many companies though the personal carbon footprint of their employees is many times greater than the footprint of the organisation they work for so it can really help multiply the impact of any company initiatives that are already in place. However, as people learn about sustainability they are likely to bring that knowledge to any decisions they make in the workplace. This can affect behaviour on everything from flights to electricity usage.

Giki Social Enterprise

  • What’s Giki’s mission?

    Giki is a Social Enterprise who mission is to help people live more sustainably. We believe in providing people with evidence backed information to help them make the sustainable decisions which are right for them.

  • What’s the link with the Giki Badges app?

    Giki Social Enterprise runs both Giki Zero and Giki Badges. Our free Giki Badges app allows users to scan UK supermarket products to see whether they are sustainable and healthy. As such Giki Badges, for products, and Giki Zero, for a sustainable life, have the same aim which is to help people live more sustainably but are currently separate.

Glossary

  • When you say carbon what do you mean?

    When we mention carbon we are referring to carbon dioxide equivalents. This is a measure used to compare the emissions from various greenhouse gases based on their global warming potential.

  • What is Net Zero?

    Net zero means that any emissions are balanced by absorbing an equivalent amount from the atmosphere. We will achieve net-zero emissions when any remaining human-caused GHG emissions are balanced out by removing GHGs from the atmosphere. In order to do this human-caused emissions, such as those from fossil fuelled vehicles and factories, should be reduced as close to zero as possible. Any remaining GHGs should be balanced with an equivalent amount of carbon removal, for example by restoring forests. However, any use of offsets should be temporary.