Monday, June 18, 2007

This is from the HPI site.

Happy Planet Index (HPI)

Your personal Happy Planet Index (HPI) is 58, which is similar to that of countries such as Seychelles, Indonesia or Tonga. Not bad. This is above the world average of 46, but still below the target value of 83, so there is more you can do to improve your health and well-being, or reduce your environmental impact. Your score is about the same as that of your country, 54.4.

Below is a breakdown of the various components that make up your HPI score.



[Average is of all online responses to this survey - not the average for your country]

Life Expectancy

Hurray! Your life expectancy is well above average for your gender and country. Probably, you're doing all the major things right - eating well, not smoking, getting regular exercise, and you're lucky enough to have the right genes. Are there any more ways you could make a difference? Some factors that improve your life expectancy are more surprising than others. For example, giving up your car, avoiding living alone, moving out of the city and shrugging off stress.



Ecological Footprint

Your ecological footprint is 4.52 global hectares, or 2.51 planets. This is equivalent to the average in Hong Kong or Austria.

Your ecological footprint is greater than the average for the country you live in. If you live in a country with large economic inequalities, do note that this might be the case even if you are environmentally aware and trying to reduce your footprint, as others in your country might be living in very different circumstances. For example, Brazil's mean footprint of 2.2 g ha does not distinguish between the very low consumption lives of tribes in the Amazon, and those of people living Western-style lives in the big cities, whose personal footprints will inevitably be much higher.

You are using between and one and a half and three times your share of the planet's resources (assuming no resources are put aside for other species). This is an amount typical of people in many industrialised countries, though just below the average for the UK. As such, if you are living in an industrialised country, you are probably doing some things well and some things not so well in terms of reducing your ecological impact. Seven ways that everyone can reduce their footprint include:

  1. It's obvious, but we have to say it. Conserve energy. Turn off the lights when you leave a room, buy energy-efficient bulbs and appliances, turn off your TV completely, rather than leave it on standby.
  2. Reduce your waste. If there are ways to recycle where you live, try and do so. If you have a garden, start a compost heap. Re-use plastic bags. Give away clothes you don't use, rather than throwing them away. There are hundreds of little things you can do.
  3. Live with someone! Whether it be your partner, family, children or friends, sharing your living space means sharing your ecological impact. It will probably also increase your well-being!
  4. Leave your car in the garage. Car use has a huge impact on ecological footprint. Obviously it's easier for some people than others, but where possible, try to use public transport more. Or, even better, get on a bike, or simply walk!
  5. Go local. Why buy tomatoes from another country, if you can get home grown ones? For those living in Europe - think about all those miles travelled by wine from South Africa and Australia, when Europe produces some of the best wines in the world.
  6. You don't have to become vegetarian, but cutting down on meat, particularly beef, and particularly from animals fed by imported soya feed, is an effective step to reducing your footprint.
  7. It has to be said that air travel is one of the biggest contributors to many people's footprints. For example, flying direct from London to Sydney and back would add 5.44 g ha to your footprint - that's the average Briton's footprint for an entire year. Flights with a connection add even more polluting air miles.



Life Satisfaction

Brilliant! You reported a life satisfaction of 9, which is above the national averages for all the countries of the world. At the individual level, in the World Values Survey, only a quarter of respondents worldwide, and 29% of British respondents reported a life satisfaction of 9 or higher.


The new economics foundation (nef) recognises that there's more to life than feeling good, which is why our model for well-being is based on four domains – personal feelings, personal functionings, social feelings and social functionings. 'Feelings' refers to your attitude to the way you, your future and society are. 'Functionings' looks at whether you have the opportunities to do the things that bring you well-being. Like with life satisfaction, a score of 5 is theoretically the middle score, but, given the way most people respond to surveys, is below average.

Personal Feelings

In this online questionnaire, personal feelings are assessed with two questions – one testing your optimism and one testing your self-esteem.

You are very secure about yourself and about your future.



Personal Functionings

In this online questionnaire personal functionings are assessed with five questions – two evaluating your subjective opinion on your health and how activity you are, the other three testing you for feelings of autonomy, purpose and worth.

You are healthy, active and full of strong feelings of worth, autonomy and purpose.



Social Feelings

In this online questionnaire social feelings are assessed with four questions – three assessing your opinion of your community, whilst the last looks at personal relationships.

You have a very strong sense of trust and belonging in your community, combined with an excellent personal life.



Social Functionings

In this online questionnaire social functionings are assessed with four questions – two assessing your job / studies, one your free time, and one your community participation. If you did not respond to the work / study questions, your score is judged purely on the other two aspects.

You are satisfied with your job / course - it is interesting, and only occasionally stressful. Further it normally leaves you enough time to do the things you want to do.




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