• xTalks: Digital Discourses

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Ory Zik: Why You Don’t Know Your Carbon Footprint

Ory ZIk

16 of the last 17 years were the hottest on record. It is likely Ory Zik's 2018 presentation will start with "17 of the last 18 years were the hottest on record". The world is in the midst of a climate crisis. At the same time, essential policies (cap and trade, carbon tax, clean power plan, CAFE regulations) are either dead or dying. The market must step-in and act. Consumers and investors must hold companies and policymakers accountable. The oxygen of markets is metrics and the climate metric is carbon footprint. So why is it that we are so ‘carbon illiterate’? Why is it that nearly no-one knows the carbon footprint of anything? and what can we do to fix this situation?

A necessary condition is quantitative thinking -- not adjectives and anecdotes like ‘renewable’ and ‘sustainable’ -- but metrics rooted in data and science. 

Greenometry is a new social enterprise whose mission is to readily communicate the carbon footprint of everything. Consistent, accurate, and simple metrics are a necessary condition for behavior change. Greenometry's approach combines behavioral aspects, data, and simple physics. Carbon footprinting should be geospatially tuned and harmonize water and land into a simple unifying metric.

Zik's talk will present the foundations of his thinking, the overall platform that will enable ubiquitous carbon footprinting, and specific results on scope 2 emissions, the inclusion of water, and the carbon footprint of solar energy.


Award-winning physicist, entrepreneur, and environmentalist, Ory Zik founded Greenometry, a non-profit dedicated to quantifying the climate crisis with ‘numbers not adjectives’. Formerly founder/CEO of Heliofocus and CEO of Energy Points, Zik is the founder of Greenpeace Israel and was the curator of Israel’s national Science Museum.


Missed Zik's xTalk? Read MIT student Effie Jia's reflections and summary.