Published on 29/04/2023

Surging Carbon Footprint: Emergence of Online Renting?

First of all… what is Carbon Footprint?


Carbon footprint is the amount of greenhouse gas that is released into the atmosphere as a result of activities of an individual or entity. For entities, it usually includes direct emissions of greenhouse gasses from their product process; while for individuals, it typically includes emissions associated with the consumption of goods and services indirectly. Basically, our everyday activities such as taking the bus, turning on the air conditioner, purchasing daily items, and purchasing food ALL contribute to our Carbon Footprint.


Globally, the average carbon footprint per person per year is around 4 tonnes of carbon dioxide (which is equivalent to 2,000 CO2 fire extinguishers). According to Worldometers, Hong Kong in 2016 has CO2 emissions per capita at 6.5, contributing to 0.13% of the World’s CO2 emissions. 

OK.. so what should I care about my Carbon Footprint?


Global warming, climate change etc are global phenomena that are not new news. Our individual carbon footprint is a key driver in accelerating the above issues if we continue daily activities and consumption without much thought and their implications towards the environment. In 100 years time, it has been anticipated that if we don’t act and change our consumption habits, climate change will mean that sea levels will rise significantly, making some beautiful cities such as Venice vanish. Our future generations may also not have the chance to see snow, as temperature around the world may rise 3 - 10 degrees.


What can we do about it?


You may think that you are insignificant and unable to contribute in potentially reversing the impact of climate change. But actually you CAN make a difference! Globally, governments are trying to reduce carbon footprint by achieving carbon neutrality. As individuals, we can play a part too. There are many ways which we could reduce our carbon footprint. The most straightforward one is to reduce our consumption and purchases of goods and products. 


Do you start to realize that you find yourself buying something you only use a few times? Whether it be a coffee making kit, tools and equipment for an ad hoc project, a costume for your company annual dinner … etc, and realize it is starting to take up space at your home? You might be thinking, “I really don’t use it anymore, but its so new and it seems like a waste to throw it away… what can I do?”


Elephant Please aims to enable all of us to avoid spending on items we may only need for a few times, and in the process reduce your carbon footprint by renting and lending equipment and products online. We encourage our customers to minimize their purchases - both offline and online - and instead look for alternatives to utilize what is already available in the market. Elephant Please would like to give these items a second chance, and at the same time encourage customers to look for items on rental for online if they are only planning to use the item for once or for a short period of time. 


Our goal is to reduce consumption and purchase of items by making online rental an option for customers, thereby lowering the demand for brand new products and the need to produce new items. The manufacturing process involves the burning of fossil fuels, usage of power and electricity which contributes to carbon footprint. Taking the fashion industry as an example, the production of a t-shirt emits 6.75kg of carbon dioxide. But what if we can rent items? What if we make full use of what is already produced and already out there in the market - and need not produce a brand new item every single time? This reduces the amount of products that needs to be manufactured and thus minimizes our carbon footprint.


Renting items online can significantly reduce the need to manufacture new products. You can rent an outfit for a special occasion, biking equipment for a competition, an instrument for a musical performance… you name it. There isn’t really a need to buy something new everytime you need something. We can utilize what is already out there - not only does this save you money from buying a brand new item, but it also reduces your carbon footprint.