Keeping Score On Climate: How We Measure Greenhouse Gases : Short Wave Host Emily Kwong wants to keep an eye on her carbon footprint. Most of it consists of greenhouse gas emissions from driving her car or buying meat at the grocery store. But it's not so obvious how to measure those emissions, or how factories, cargo ships, or even whole countries measure theirs.

Enter: NPR science reporter Rebecca Hersher. Together, Rebecca and Emily break down how greenhouse gas emissions are tallied ... and why those measurements are so important in figuring out who's responsible for cleaning up.

What should we measure next? Email the show at shortwave@npr.org.

Keeping Score On Climate: How We Measure Greenhouse Gases

Keeping Score On Climate: How We Measure Greenhouse Gases

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Smoke emerging from chimneys in Skutskär, Sweden. Gerhard Pettersson/EyeEm/Getty Images hide caption

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Gerhard Pettersson/EyeEm/Getty Images

Smoke emerging from chimneys in Skutskär, Sweden.

Gerhard Pettersson/EyeEm/Getty Images

Host Emily Kwong wants to cut down on her greenhouse gas emissions, like those from driving around in her car or shopping for meat at the grocery store. But there's one problem: she has no clue how to measure them in the first place. Or how factories, cargo ships, or even whole countries measure theirs.

Enter: science reporter Rebecca Hersher. Together, they break down how greenhouse gas emissions are calculated... and how these measurements can reveal who's responsible in climate change negotiations.

What should we measure next? Email the show at shortwave@npr.org.

Further reading:

This episode was produced by Margaret Cirino, edited by Gabriel Spitzer, and fact-checked by Rachel Carlson. Our audio engineer was Stu Rushfield.