Home FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

We get a lot of questions, here are the ones we are asked most often.

How do I join?

First you have to create an account. You will then be emailed an activation link. Click this link and your account will be confirmed. You can do the Carbon Quiz immediately, followed by the 4-week challenge

What if I'm not a student?

No problem!

Feel free to join the challenge anyway. Sign up as a citizen.

How do I join as a group?

You will need to email us - cool-it@bcsea.org and we will set up your group. That way you can have a group leaderboard and see how your results compare to the rest of your group.

How do I join as a Teacher?

Click Join Us then I'm a BC Teacher. You can then find your school, and you will need to register your class by choosing a clear class name that your students will join once they set up their account. We will activate your class, and then you will be able to log in, do the quiz and challenge and also see the progress of your class and other classes and schools

I'm a teacher - how do I check my class results?

Click on the little lines in the top left of the screen to bring up the menu, then click on My School. Here you can see your students and their points and emissions.

Click on your location to see all schools in the area that are participating, and click on See All Cities to see all schools and areas. Click on Students to see the main participants.

So what is the purpose of this whole thing?

Join the challenge to find out your current carbon footprint, and to learn how you can make small but mighty changes to reduce your impact on the environment and climate

How can I get in touch?

Feel free to email us anytime: cool-it@bcsea.org

Do you offer workshops too?

Yes! We have a great elementary program for grade 4 - 7 students, and a high school program for high school students.

We can also run workshops and activities with adults. Get in touch through cool-it@bcsea.org

Can I go back and add actions to previous weeks?

No, once you click finish for each week your answers are saved and you cannot change previous weeks' actions

Do I have to do the Carbon Quiz and the Challenge?

Yes - iIf you want to do the 4-week challenge you do need to fill out the Carbon Quiz because we use these answers to accurately estimate your CO2 emissions

How long does it take?

It takes only a few minutes to fill out the Carbon Quiz. Then you are part of the Cool It! Climate Challenge. This part takes four weeks in total. Each week at home you will do a range of actions aimed at reducing your environmental footprint, and you will log them in the challenge. Once you have finished the 4-week challenge you will not be able to enter any more information.

Do I log my answers all at once every week or every day?

It's up to you! You can either log in every day or every few days and log your actions, or you can log your actions every week if you can remember them.

Once you enter an action it will be saved so you can go back to it. The platform will also remember which week you are currently at.

Once you click Finish each week you will not be able to go back and add actions, so only click finish once you are sure you have entered everything for that week!

I am a parent, what do I do?

Your child will likely need your help to complete both the Carbon Quiz and the Challenge. Please sit with them as they enter their answers and help them out where needed. They will need to use your email address to create a profile if they don't have their own email address.

They will also need your support to take action as some things require family involvement, such as questions related to cars and transport, grocery shopping, and home energy use.

How do you know that I actually did the actions?

The platform is based on an honesty system and we hope that everyone who uses it will answer honestly. It is aimed at supporting behaviour change so that people can learn how to reduce their environmental footprint and hopefully they continue the actions after the challenge.

What is a carbon footprint?

Your carbon footprint is the amount of carbon dioxide that is created by you and your daily life and living habits. Everything you do contributes to your carbon footprint, from the size of your house and how it is heated and cooled, to the form of transport that you use to get around, and the products that you buy (and the carbon that is created from their production, transport, and what happens to them when you throw them out).

Your choices make a HUGE difference on your carbon footprint. This platform is aimed at helping you make choices that reduce your carbon emissions, which contribute to climate change.

How does climate change work?

Climate change is the most pressing issue of our time. It is a complicated process, with many factors contributing to climate change, but the main cause is us! With everything that we do we create greenhouse gases that are heating up the earth and causing serious global impacts.

Find out more about how it works with these Planet Nutshell videos, or sign up to a Cool It! workshop by emailing cool-it@bcsea.org

Do I have to do every action?

Not at all. Choose whichever ones you want to do. We completely understand that participants won't be able to do every action.

If you don't do an action just don't select an answer and move on to the next question

The website is stuck and I can't start the challenge

If the website keeps taking you to the homepage it is probably because you haven't completed the Carbon Quiz. The Quiz MUST be completed before you can start the challenge as the challenge uses your answers to determine accurate CO2e reductions based on your lifestyle.

What data did you use/How are the calculations done?

The Cool It! Climate Challenge estimates an individual’s Greenhouse Gas footprint, and the impact of actions taken during the challenge, in kgs of CO 2 equivalent per year. Calculations to estimate Greenhouse Gas footprints use emissions factors from the BC Ministry of Environment’s Best Practices Methodology for Quantifying Greenhouse Gas Emissions (2016) document were possible (eg. home energy use, transportation and travel) and other Canadian government sources and peer reviewed academic studies for indirect emissions not covered by this document (eg. consumption and waste, emission factors).

Category level data is used to estimate emissions based on quiz questions, representing typical emissions associated with various types of behavior, to provide a reasonable approximation of emissions without requiring detailed data from each person such as utility bills, vehicle odometer readings, etc. Data sets used include NRCan Comprehensive Energy End Use Database and EnergyStar Calculator, NRCan Vehicle Survey Update Report (2008), Statistics Canada Census Data, as well as many other sources. Baseline footprint calculations are carried out and reported for an individual rather than a full household, however for individual actions that affect a whole household, savings are based on the associated total household emission reduction (eg. retrofits, such as installing a low flow shower head).

Savings are calculated assuming actions are continued over a full year.

If you have a question you can email us at cool-it@bcsea.org