Creating change [01-12]
Antony Gormley and Peter Clegg – Three made places, sculpture, 2005
We hear a lot about our carbon footprints and the amounts of CO2 we are each responsible for every year, but it can be very difficult to understand what these figures actually mean. Peter Clegg, a British architect specialising in environmental designs, and British sculptor Antony Gormley have attempted to help us visualise our CO2 emissions and what they mean for the planet.
There are three parts to this snow sculpture, which was made in the Arctic on one of the Cape Farewell expeditions. The volume of each part – ‘Block’, ‘Standing Room’ and ‘Shelter’ – is the same as that of 1kg of CO2 at room temperature – 0.54 cubic metres.
"It is roughly the volume occupied by a coffin, which is perhaps an appropriate symbolic unit when we are talking about the destruction of the planet," explains Peter Clegg. "[A] ‘coffin’s worth’ of CO2 is [equal to] about the exhaust gases of a 2-litre car travelling 10 miles, or the emissions resulting from leaving on a 100-watt tungsten electric light bulb for a day."
He adds that the current average annual global carbon footprint per person is 4 000 tonnes. In the EU it can be up to 10 000 tonnes, and 20 000 tonnes in the USA. To be sustainable, we need to reduce the global average to 2 000 ‘coffins’ per year.
Work reproduced courtesy of the artist and the Cape Farewell project.