Facebook Photos 2017 Size Guide

In its early days, Facebook was all about text and links. But as it has grown up, images have become more and more important. They’re now more important for design and identity on the user interface, like your profile picture or cover photo. And it’s a great way to share photos in galleries and on the timeline. Facebook photos are now a huge part of the site’s appeal even as dedicated image apps like  have become hugely popular as well.

If you’ve come across this page, you’ve no doubt found out for yourself that working out what image sizes to use on Facebook isn’t as easy as it could be. It involves some wrangling to get the results you want. Each type of image on a page, profile, and timeline has its own size and quirks. And Facebook never has been very good about making its help pages easy to find.

Making things even more fun is that Facebook changes things from time to time, usually without any warning. Sometimes it’s a small, incremental tweak. Sometimes it’s an entire overhaul (such as when timelines were introduced and again when they were changed from two columns to one column). So it’s always a bit of a moving target. And there always seems to be a new system just around the corner.

So whether you’re using Facebook pages for social media marketing or simply trying to post photos for friends and family, here’s my freshly updated 2017 version of the unofficial guide for the sizes of Facebook photos on the various parts of the site.

I try to keep this as up-to-date as possible, but Facebook has a nasty habit of making unannounced changes and then rolling them out gradually to users so that not everyone gets them at once. If you’ve noticed something that’s changed, please let me know in the comments so I can update it.

Facebook Cover Photo Size

The Facebook Cover Photo is the large panoramic image space at the top of the timeline.

It’s now displayed at 820px wide by 312px high on computers and 640px by 360px on smartphones.

The image you upload must be at least 399px wide and 150px tall. I recommend uploading ones that are at least 1640px wide and 624px high.  a detailed post explaining why.

You can only designate one photo as your Cover Photo. Panoramas are ideal. Simple crops also work.

And there’s nothing stopping you from assembling a collage in your imaging software, saving it as a single image file, and uploading that. Here’s an example using  (see  for step by step instructions).

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And here’s an example using Lightroom (see  for step by step instructions).

Facebook Photo Size Guide

If you’ve just set up a new Facebook profile or page and don’t yet have a cover photo, just click on the “Add Cover Photo” button at the top of the page where the Cover Photo will go. You’ll then get this warning popup:

Facebook Photo Size Guide

Once you’ve added your photo, you can change it easily. When you’re logged in to your account and on the Timeline view, click on the camera icon at the bottom right of the cover photo–you’ll get a flyout link for “change photo.” If you decide you want to reposition or remove the photo, you can use the same menu.

Facebook Profile Picture Size

The Profile Picture is the smaller, square at bottom that’s to the left of the cover photo. It used to overlay the cover photo’s bottom left corner, but in the latest layout it has been moved to it’s own spot in the top left of the page.

Whatever shape image you upload, it will be cropped to a square.

It displays at 170px by 170px on computers and 128px by 128px on smartphones.

If you use a photo that’s not square, you have some control over which part of the image to use for the crop. When you’re logged in, click on the small camera icon at the bottom right of the profile picture–as you hover it will overlay to a “change image” link.

Tip: If you find that your resulting profile picture, after it’s downsized in Facebook, is blurry, try uploading an image twice the size of the downsized image (that is, an image that is 340px by 340px). That should give a sharper result.

Profile Picture on the Timeline

The profile image that appears next to your name on comments and posts is the same image but is automatically scaled down to 40px by 40px.

Shared Link Thumbnails

Some things got simplified in the new layout. didn’t. But they’ve been improved on the previous version, and we also get some nifty new features like being able to upload a different thumbnail image and use multiple thumbnails that all link back to the shared URL. (I have a separate post on .)

The simplest layout is with a single image. It’s scaled to fill a box 476px by 249px. Like this:

A new feature is that you can include multiple thumbnails, each of which is linked back to the URL you’re sharing. They’re cropped to squares that are 300px by 300px and displayed as horizontal carousel. Like this:

One Photo on the Timeline

When you upload an image to the timeline, a thumbnail is generated automatically to fit within a box that is 476px wide and up to 714px tall. So if you want to use the maximum space available, upload an image in portrait orientation (vertical) that is in the ratio of 3:2.

If you upload a landscape (horizontal) image, it will be scaled to 476px wide and retain its shape. This, for example, is a rectangle in landscape orientation that’s in the aspect ratio of 3:2. The full area of the image appears.

This is another rectangle in landscape orientation, but it’s a much narrower aspect ratio like a banner or panorama. The width is again 476px and the image is scaled so that the entire image area appears.

If you upload that same image rotated 90 degrees, so that it’s tall rather than wide, it will be cropped to the maximum available area of 476px by 714px.

And if you upload a square, the whole image will be displayed, with the width at 476px.

Uploading Multiple Images to a Page Timeline

You can upload multiple photos at once to the timeline. How they’re displayed depends on how many images you’re uploading and the orientation of what I will call the primary image.

The primary image is what I’m calling the one that displays first in the uploading popup, and it also displays larger in some of the layouts. So far as I know there’s not an official name for it, but I’m going to go ahead and use primary image.

As well as displaying first, the primary image has another important role. It determines the layout you get. If you upload 3 images with a square primary image you’ll end up with a different layout than if you upload 3 images with a rectangular primary image.

The easiest way to select which image serves as the primary image is to drag it to the left in the upload dialog.

Here’s an example of what I mean. In this one, I’m uploading two images, a red square and a green portrait rectangle. If the red square is in the first position, like this:

it posts like this:

Uploading exactly the same two images but reversing them, so that the portrait rectangle is first, like this:

displays like this:

The same principle applies if you’re uploading two, three, or four images–the layout will always take its cue from the primary image.

2 Images With Horizontal (Landscape) Primary Image

The full width becomes 476px and the height is cropped to 237px.

2 Images With Vertical (Portrait) Primary Image

2 Images With Square Primary Image

3 Images With Horizontal (Landscape) Primary Image

Because the layout takes its cue from the primary image, you can mix and match the orientations of the non-primary images–they’ll still display the same.

3 Images With Vertical (Portrait) Primary Image

3 Images With Square Primary Image

4 or More Images with a Horizontal (Landscape) Primary Image

You can mix and match the orientations of the non-primary images–they’ll still display the same.

If you upload 5 images or more, it displays only the first 4 images but will add an overlay to the bottom right thumbnail with the number of images that are not displayed (eg. +2 or +4, etc). Like this:

4 or More Images with a Vertical (Portrait) Primary Image

4 or More Images with a Square Primary Image

Full-Width Photos on the Timeline

Yes, they were cool. The image spanned both columns. But Facebook did away with them in their redesign in mid-2014. Your updates now only show in a single column, and there’s no way to make photos wider than that column.

Event Header Images

No matter what shape image you upload as a header image for an even post, it’ll be cropped to an aspect ratio of 16:9. For best results, upload an image that’s 1920 by 1080 pixels. But something to watch out for is that in the main event view it’s scaled down quite a lot, so don’t use fonts that are too small (people can click on the image to open a larger version, but not everyone is going to do that).

When it’s displayed on the main event page it’s scaled to 500 by 262 pixels, like this:

Metadata

While not specifically related to image sizes, it is worth knowing that Facebook strips out all metadata from your images. That includes all GPS, camera type, and other data that your camera might embed, as well as anything like keywords or copyright information you might have added. (An exception is if you’re in ).

We are losing the fight against Nature, when are we going to give up?

For those who don’t know what is going on, is very simple, greenhouse gases allow shortwave radiation from the sun to pass through the atmosphere and warm the Earth’s surface. The energy that then radiates out from the surface, longwave radiation, is trapped by the same greenhouse gases, warming the air, oceans, and land. When coal, oil, and natural gas are burned, they release enormous amounts of greenhouse gases — especially carbon dioxide, or CO2, which is by far the most prevalent. The gases add up much faster in the atmosphere than natural processes can absorb them, and thereby wreak Earth’s climate system.

To date, warming and melting of the Arctic has occurred far faster than was projected, leading some scientists to conclude that the Arctic could be ice free in the summer as early as 2012. If the Greenland ice sheet were to melt completely, sea level would rise about 20 feet, leaving hundreds of millions of coastal residents — people, plants, animals — homeless. And severe weather events like hurricanes, droughts, and heat waves, already on the rise, will occur more frequently than ever. Countless other disastrous outcomes, many of which can’t be precisely modeled for predictive purposes, make climate change a looming threat.If things continue the way they are by 2050 this will amount to 35 percent of all plant and animal life currently in existence — at least a million species.

IS A FULL OUT WAR

Humans have added so much greenhouse gases that the greenhouse effect that first made life possible now threatens the world as we know it.

The “War Against Nature” is escalating at an exponential rate throughout the world and the bloating population of humans are now feeling the wrath of climate disruption and the consequences of razing its magnificent jungles. Today there are more severe and frequent floods displacing a half of a million people regularly, massive hillside slums, droughts, hurricanes, extinction of fauna and flora and unimaginable squalor with nil by way of sanitation for people.

 

Some Facts

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Who is causing the most damage to Nature?

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Nature fights back… Who is most likely to get hurt?

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We all lose!

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The bottom line…

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How to stop this war against nature?

Governments can take several steps to reduce the threat of global warming. First and foremost, the United States and other industrial nations must use less of the fossil fuels — especially coal, oil, and gasoline — that produce carbon dioxide, the most significant heat-trapping gas. Industrial countries are responsible for the largest share of worldwide emissions of heat-trapping gases. But these nations also have a great ability to switch to cutting-edge energy technologies that produce fewer of these emissions.

The nations of the world must negotiate a climate change treaty with legally binding limits on emissions of heat-trapping gases.

The United States can reduce its carbon-dioxide emissions through four principal strategies that make use of new energy technologies: improving energy efficiency, developing renewable energy resources such as solar and wind power, reducing gasoline consumption for transportation, and switching from coal and oil to natural gas.

Improve Energy Efficiency

The less energy we use, the less carbon dioxide we will produce. Over the past 20 years, American industry and consumers have begun to switch to more-efficient motors, vehicles, appliances, windows, and manufacturing processes. This switch has saved considerable energy and money, but much greater efficiency is possible.

Develop Renewable Energy

Clean, safe, renewable sources, such as solar, wind, and sustainably grown biomass (plant matter), can provide us with energy but do not contribute to global warming. These technologies are ready to be deployed much more widely, but government policies must encourage their use.

Reduce Gasoline Consumption for Transportation

Cars, trucks, and buses consume over half of the oil used in the United States. Highly efficient gasoline-powered cars, and alternatively fueled vehicles such as electric and fuel-cell cars and buses, can reduce carbon dioxide emissions by using less or no gasoline. In addition, policies can encourage consumers to drive less and to use alternatives to single-passenger automobile trips, such as carpools, bicycles, and public transportation.

Switch from Coal and Oil to Natural Gas

Although natural gas is a fossil fuel, it produces less carbon dioxide than either coal or oil. Changing from coal to natural gas for generating electricity and from oil to natural gas for home heating is thus desirable as a quick fix, even though these switches alone cannot reduce carbon dioxide emissions nearly as much as is necessary.

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Additional Government Steps

Reducing American use of coal, oil, and gasoline would start to address the global warming threat, but other steps, such as transferring technology to developing countries, preserving forests, decreasing atmospheric methane, continuing to phase out CFCs, and slowing down population growth, are also important. They can also provide benefits in addition to reducing global warming. Forest preservation, for example, would protect endangered species, while slower population growth would make it easier to supply adequate food for all the world’s people.

Transfer Technology to Developing Countries

American businesses, the government, and international organizations need to find ways to transfer advanced energy technologies to developing countries, so that those nations can build their economies without having to use the older, polluting fossil fuel technologies that the industrial countries are now trying to phase out.

Preserve and Plant Forests

Trees take in carbon dioxide and use it to grow. Deforestation, especially in the tropics where many of the largest, most important forests are located, contributes significantly to global warming. Efforts to preserve forests and to plant trees on deforested land are essential not only for preventing global warming but also for preserving biodiversity.

Decrease Methane in the Atmosphere

Although methane contributes much less to global warming than does carbon dioxide, it is still responsible for about 15 percent of the problem. Among other steps to decrease methane emissions, the nations of the world can prevent leaks from natural gas pipelines, cut methane emissions from landfills, and reduce their use of beef for food.

Continue to Phase Out CFCs

Because chlorofluorocarbons are responsible for depleting the protective ozone layer, the nations of the world have agreed to stop using them. These chemicals also trap heat, so vigilance in enforcing the international agreements to phase out their use will help slow global warming as well.

What Businesses can do?

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Your turn to take action….

Climate change affects us all. Here are tips on how you can personally make a difference.

At Home – reduce, reuse, recycle!

  • Buy minimally packaged goods
  • Recycle paper, plastic, glass, and metal. Reuse, mend, and repurpose things to save money and divert waste from your local landfill
  • Plug air leaks in windows and doors to increase energy efficiency
  • Adjust your thermostat, lower in winter, higher in summer
  • Replace old appliances with energy efficient models and light bulbs
  • Save electricity by plugging appliances into a power strip and turning them off completely when not in use
  • Wash clothes in cold or warm water
  • Run dishwashers only when full and don’t use heat to dry dishes
  • Eat less meat, poultry, and fish
  • Plant Trees – Enter tree planting pledges online, then plant indigenous or locally appropriate trees where you live. View results of tree planting efforts globally.

At Work and On the Go

  • Print double-sided or not at all
  • Always use reusable cups, knives and forks.
  • Think before you travel. If a video conference call will suffice, spare the hassle and expense, and CO2 emissions.
  • Avoid traffic jams and decrease your personal carbon footprint by walking, bicycling, and using mass transit whenever possible. Consider carpooling with friends, neighbors, and co-workers.
  • Taking the stairs can sometimes be faster than waiting in long elevator lines. In addition to saving energy, taking the stairs gives you a mild workout which will help keep you healthy.
  • Have your business join the UN Global Compact and become part of the solution for two of today’s largest scale environmental issues – Climate Change and Water Sustainability.Here are some additional tips on how to kick the CO2 habit 

Know Your Carbon Footprint

Find out how much CO2 your lifestyle produces and the amount of resources it takes to live the way you do. Once you know the impact your lifestyle causes you can start to make adjustments and monitor improvement. Encourage others to do the same. Calculate CO2 emissions resulting from your air travel.

Learn More — Knowledge is power.

Speak up!
You can raise your voice to combat climate change by asking your local and national authorities to engage in environmentally-friendly measures.

Visit one of these organizations for more information

Buckle up, It’s going to be a bumpy ride…


The United States Environmental Protection Agency says that Carbon dioxide (CO2) is the primary greenhouse gas emitted through human activities. In 2012, CO2 accounted for about 82% of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions from human activities. Carbon dioxide is naturally present in the atmosphere as part of the Earth’s carbon cycle (the natural circulation of carbon among the atmosphere, oceans, soil, plants, and animals). Human activities are altering the carbon cycle—both by adding more CO2 to the atmosphere and by influencing the ability of natural sinks, like forests, to remove CO2 from the atmosphere. While CO2 emissions come from a variety of natural sources, human-related emissions are responsible for the increase that has occurred in the atmosphere since the industrial revolution. [1]

U.S. Carbon Dioxide Emissions, By Source

Pie chart that shows emissions by use. 38 percent is electricity, 33 percent is transportation, 14 percent is industry, 9 percent is residential and commercial, and 6 percent is other (non-fossil fuel combustion).

Note: All emission estimates from the Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: 1990-2012.

The main human activity that emits CO2 is the combustion of fossil fuels (coal, natural gas, and oil) for energy and transportation, although certain industrial processes and land-use changes also emit CO2. The main sources of CO2emissions in the United States are described below.

  • Electricity. Electricity is a significant source of energy in the United States and is used to power homes, business, and industry. The combustion of fossil fuels to generate electricity is the largest single source of CO2 emissions in the nation, accounting for about 38% of total U.S. CO2emissions and 31% of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in 2012. The type of fossil fuel used to generate electricity will emit different amounts of CO2. To produce a given amount of electricity, burning coal will produce more CO2than oil or natural gas.
  • Transportation. The combustion of fossil fuels such as gasoline and diesel to transport people and goods is the second largest source of CO2 emissions, accounting for about 32% of total U.S. CO2 emissions and 27% of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in 2012. This category includes transportation sources such as highway vehicles, air travel, marine transportation, and rail.
  • Industry. Many industrial processes emit CO2 through fossil fuel combustion. Several processes also produce CO2 emissions through chemical reactions that do not involve combustion, for example, the production and consumption of mineral products such as cement, the production of metals such as iron and steel, and the production of chemicals. Fossil fuel combustion from various industrial processes accounted for about 14% of total U.S. CO2 emissions and 12% of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in 2012. Note that many industrial processes also use electricity and therefore indirectly cause the emissions from the electricity production.

Carbon dioxide is constantly being exchanged among the atmosphere, ocean, and land surface as it is both produced and absorbed by many microorganisms, plants, and animals. However, emissions and removal of CO2 by these natural processes tend to balance. Since the Industrial Revolution began around 1750, human activities have contributed substantially to climate change by adding CO2 and other heat-trapping gases to the atmosphere.

In the United States, since 1990, the management of forests and non-agricultural land has acted as a net sink of CO2, which means that more CO2 is removed from the atmosphere, and stored in plants and trees, than is emitted. This sink offset about 15% of total emissions in 2012 and is discussed in more detail in the Land Use, Land-Use Change, and Forestry section.

To find out more about the role of CO2 warming the atmosphere and its sources, visit the Causes of Climate Changepage and the Greenhouse Gas Indicators page in the Science section.

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Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the United States increased by about 5% between 1990 and 2012. Since the combustion of fossil fuel is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, changes in emissions from fossil fuel combustion have historically been the dominant factor affecting total U.S. emission trends. Changes in CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion are influenced by many long-term and short-term factors, including population growth, economic growth, changing energy prices, new technologies, changing behavior, and seasonal temperatures. Between 1990 and 2012, the increase in CO2 emissions corresponded with increased energy use by an expanding economy and population, and an overall growth in emissions from electricity generation. Transportation emissions also contributed to the 5% increase, largely due to an increase in miles traveled by motor vehicles.

U.S. Carbon Dioxide Gas Emissions, 1990-2012

Line graph that shows the U.S. carbon dioxide emissions from 1990 to 2012. In 1990 carbon dioxide emissions started around 5,000 million metric tons. The emissions rose to about 6,000 million metric tons in 2000 where it remained until about 2008 when it began to decline. By 2009, the carbon dioxide emissions were at about 5,500 million metric tons, followed by a slight recovering in 2010 to about 5,700 million metric tons and a decrease in 2012 to about 5,400 million metric tons.

Note: All emission estimates from the Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: 1990-2012.

 

Going forward, CO2 emissions in the United States are projected to grow by about 1.5% between 2005 and 2020. [2]

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Reducing Carbon Dioxide Emissions

The most effective way to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions is to reduce fossil fuel consumption. Many strategies for reducing CO2 emissions from energy are cross-cutting and apply to homes, businesses, industry, and transportation.

Examples of Reduction Opportunities for Carbon Dioxide
Strategy Examples of How Emissions Can be Reduced
Energy Efficiency Improving the insulation of buildings, traveling in more fuel-efficient vehicles, and using more efficient electrical appliances are all ways to reduce energy consumption, and thus CO2 emissions.

Energy Conservation Reducing personal energy use by turning off lights and electronics when not in use reduces electricity demand. Reducing distance traveled in vehicles reduces petroleum consumption. Both are ways to reduce energy CO2 emissions through conservation.Learn more about What You Can Do at Home, at School, in the Office, and on the Road to save energy and reduce your carbon footprint.
Fuel Switching Producing more energy from renewable sources and using fuels with lower carbon contents are ways to reduce carbon emissions.
Carbon Capture and Sequestration Carbon dioxide capture and sequestration is a set of technologies that can potentially greatly reduce CO2 emissions from new and existing coal- and gas-fired power plants, industrial processes, and other stationary sources of CO2. Learn more.

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*Carbon dioxide’s lifetime is poorly defined because the gas is not destroyed over time, but instead moves among different parts of the ocean–atmosphere–land system. Some of the excess carbon dioxide will be absorbed quickly (for example, by the ocean surface), but some will remain in the atmosphere for thousands of years, due in part to the very slow process by which carbon is transferred to ocean sediments.

The world would warm by 4°C by the end of this century if we do not take concerted action now. The World Bank report “Turn Down the Heat: Climate Extremes, Regional Impacts, and the Case for Resilience is a result of contributions from a wide range of experts from across the globe. The report follows “Turn Down the Heat: Why a 4°C Warmer World Must be Avoided”, released in November 2012. This new report outlines an alarming scenario for the days and years ahead—what we could face in our lifetime.

The scientists tell us that if the world warms by 2°C—warming which may be reached in 20 to 30 years—that will cause widespread food shortages, unprecedented heat-waves, and more intense cyclones. In the near-term, climate change, which is already unfolding, could batter the slums even more and greatly harm the lives and the hopes of individuals and families who have had little hand in raising the Earth’s temperature. Today, our world is 0.8°C above pre-industrial levels of the 18th century.

We could see a 2°C world in the space of one generation. The first Turn Down the Heat report was a wake-up call. This second scientific analysis gives us a more detailed look at how the negative impacts of climate change already in motion could create devastating conditions especially for those least able to adapt. The poorest could increasingly be hit the hardest. For this report, we turned again to the scientists at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and Climate Analytics. This time, we asked them to take a closer look at the tropics and prepare a climate forecast based on the best available evidence and supplemented with advanced computer simulations. With a focus on Sub-Saharan Africa, South East Asia and South Asia, the report examines in greater detail the likely impacts for affected populations of present day, 2°C and 4°C warming on critical areas like agricultural production, water resources, coastal ecosystems and cities.

The result is a dramatic picture of a world of climate and weather extremes causing devastation and human suffering. In many cases, multiple threats of increasing extreme heat waves, sea-level rise, more severe storms, droughts and floods will have severe negative implications for the poorest and most vulnerable. In Sub-Saharan Africa, significant crop yield reductions with 2°C warming are expected to have strong repercussions on food security, while rising temperatures could cause major loss of savanna grasslands threatening pastoral livelihoods.

In South Asia, projected changes to the monsoon system and rising peak temperatures put water and food resources at severe risk. Energy security is threatened, too. While, across South East Asia, rural livelihoods are faced with mounting pressures as sea-level rises, tropical cyclones increase in intensity and important marine ecosystem services are lost as warming approaches 4°C. Across all regions, the likely movement of impacted communities into urban areas could lead to ever higher numbers of people in informal settlements being exposed to heat waves, flooding, and diseases.

Here, we take a look at the world’s five biggest polluters, according to EDGAR http://edgar.jrc.ec.europa.eu/overview.php?v=intro&sort=des9

1. China

This picture from January 2013 shows two men walking in Beijing’s dense smog.  (AFP/Getty Images)

China overtook the United States as the world’s biggest carbon dioxide polluter in 2006, and has topped the list ever since.

In 2012, the communist country pumped an estimated 9.8 billion tons of CO2 into the world’s atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels such as oil and coal. And while emissions grew at a slower pace in 2012 than previous years, China still accounted for 70 percent of the global increase in CO2 emissions that year.

China’s smog levels are notorious. But air pollution is soaring to new heights due to the country’s rapid industrialization, reliance on coal power and increased car ownership for a booming population.

It doesn’t help that environmental laws are often ignored, according to green activists.

2. United States

Morning commuters travel the 210 freeway near Pasadena, Calif.  (David McNew/AFP/Getty Images)

As stated above, America’s carbon dioxide emissions had been going down for years. The decline can be partly attributed to the economic recession, improved energy efficiency, and the shale-gas boom.

Emissions reached a 20-year low of just under 5.2 billion metric tons in 2012.

But new figures show CO2 emissions actually increased 2 percent in 2013 as more utilities turned to coal for energy after a steep rise in natural gas prices.

Emissions are still 10 percent below 2005 levels, but they were once down 12 percent. The Obama administration set a goal of being 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020.

Suddenly, that goal looks like a steeper climb.

3. India

Indian commuters walk up a foot bridge in New Delhi on Jan. 31, 2013.  (Prakash Singh/AFP/Getty Images)

India’s carbon dioxide emissions shot up 7.7 percent in 2012, with those from coal growing at an even faster pace of 10.2 percent.

That despite the South Asian country recording its lowest GDP growth — 4 percent — in a decade.

One in three Indians currently live in “critically-polluted” areas. And of the 180 cities monitored by India’s Central Pollution Control Board, just two — Malapuram and Pathanamthitta in Kerala — have what are considered “low” levels of air pollution.

4. Russia

A Russian woman wears a face mask to protect herself from smoke in Moscow.  (Natalia Kolesnikova/AFP/Getty Images)

Russia’s carbon dioxide emissions plunged after the collapse of Soviet-era smokestack industries, but it remains the world’s fourth largest CO2 polluter at 1.7 billion metric tons in 2012.

Hundreds of cities currently exceed pollution limits, with Moscow, St. Petersburg and the far-northern Siberian city of Norilsk among the worst offenders.

Two cities — Norilsk and the central Russian city of Dzerzhinsk — made the environmental group Blacksmith Institute’s list of the world’s most polluted places this year.

5. Japan

The suffocating smog that blanketed swathes of China hit parts of Japan in March 2013.  (Kazuhiro Nogi/AFP/Getty Images)

Japan recently watered down its target to cut carbon dioxide emissions despite the 1.3 million metric tons of CO2 it produced in 2012.

The new target, announced in November, reverses course from a goal set four years ago and now allows a 3.1 percent increase in emissions from 1990 levels rather than seeking a 25 percent cut.

It reflects the country’s increased reliance on fossil fuels in the aftermath of the Fukushimanuclear disaster in 2011.

 

Social Engagement and You

Your online reputation matters, now more than ever. But you can impact that reputation in ways you never thought possible. Here are some of the reasons to pay attention to social feedback and how to effectively engage with reviewers to build lifelong brand advocates.

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Social Engagement is Connecting

It’s simple, you just have to connect with people who post comments about you in social media sites. These people are your customers and they provide opinion, fact and detailed feedback about their interaction with you online. Contrary to popular belief, these people are not just teenagers or random people with an axe to grind, they are your customers.

Social Sites are Growing in Importance

As social site popularity grows, so should your awareness and understanding of your online reputation… Your prospective customers are on the prowl for every nugget of your online reputation.

Impact of Poor Online Reputation… Gone are the days when tweets, posts and opinions faded into the digital ether. With the surge of smartphone usage, people of all ages and social economic persuasions are using the information out there to decide about their next purchase. Your online reputation has the potential to kill your brand because people will change their mind, mid-buying cycle. You have to Listen and Act.

There is Real Value in Every Connection

Engaging with online reviewers allows you to uncover opportunities for operational improvement, increase customer loyalty, and improve your online reputation. Make no mistake about it, social media feedback can help you grow your business, perhaps in ways you never thought possible. You can glean details about your service, product or offering, your pricing and promotions. Yep, all that information is at your fingertips.

The Numbers Speak for Themselves…

85% of customers are very happy when businesses respond to their public comments in online forums and social media venues.

27% were “delighted” with a public response to their social feedback.

34% deleted their original negative review after being engaged.

Follow four simple steps to improved reputation

  1. Listen to all reviews from all social sites, review sites, blog posts and any other digital source.
  2. Target social reviews based on author influence and reach, review star rating, and keywords used in the review.
  3. Connect with the reviewer as fast as possible and use the best practices we spell out below.
  4. Watch your star ratings increase and your location’s online influence grow.

 

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5 Engagement Best Practices

1. Marketing Sanctioned, 1 Brand Aware

Responses should mirror brand image and voice. Ensure that everyone authorized to reply to posts understands your brand voice and be sure to refresh the team as your brand voice changes. Create and distribute brand-voice guidelines. Provide a standard structure and keep your replies consistent. For example, ensure you end with a standard email for customer service and signature of replier including title. Do not copy and paste replies, rather, customize the reply to each reviewer by keying off the core messages in their review.

2. Don’t Take it Personally

Keep calm and think practically. Avoid knee jerk reactions. If you have to, give yourself a time-out before replying. Research with others before replying. Remember, customers don’t usually lie but they do embellish. Find out the details so you can address concerns confidently. Take the high road, don’t defend yourself and remember a heart felt apology never hurt anyone. As with all business, keep religion and politics out of it. This is about your company and product, not your social beliefs.

3. Target both Positive and Negative Reviews

NEGATIVE

  1. Apologize
  2. Reference the situation and commit to improve
  3. Offer help or ask what you can do for them

POSITIVE

  1. Remind your brand advocates that you’re listening
  2. Tell them something they didn’t know
  3. Invite them back

IN BOTH CASES

  1. Respond quickly, within the day if possible
  2. Be thankful for their feedback, every situation is a learning experience
  3. Reply on the public review site, but take the conversation to a designated email address that’s monitored by more than one person

Remember the “Golden Rule,” treat others as you would like to be treated!

4. Don’t just Talk…Act

Make sure you aren’t just paying lip service to the customers with whom you engage. You Must Follow Through!

First, pass the information onto the people who can make a difference in your business. Get it to the regional and general managers and their leadership teams and empower them to fix the issues quickly.

Next, encourage GM’s to use the information in pre-shift meetings for long term improvement. Reward staff whose efforts yield amazing customer service with monetary gifts and team-wide recognition. Consider creating a social media Hall of Fame or provide incentives for staff mentions: gift cards, shift priorities, time off, priority parking, and so on.

5. Measure your Progress

Ensure you keep track of engagement replies including who replied, reply date, and actual reply content. This is valuable for audit and training purposes.

Give yourself targets for engagement defined as numbers or percentage of total reviews. Some examples of goals include:

  1. % of reviews engaged: shoot for engaging with 50% of all online reviewers, even tweets
  2. % of engaged customers who reply: monitor how many customers reply to your outreach
  3. % of engaged customers who return: use your loyalty program and customer relationship management (CRM) platform to track customer return rates
  4. % who re-evaluate and repost reviews: give yourself bonus points for reviewers who change online reviews due to your efforts

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Grow Your Efforts As You Grow

Next you might wonder how to size your social media efforts. Keep it in proportion to your business and your online presence. As you grow, increase your outbound engagement, and distribute the workload after proper social media training.

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Reviews about your business are out there, it’s imperative that you listen, respond and fix the issues before they recur. Plan a time, even if only a few minutes a week, to reply to social media reviews using these best practices. Ensure you size your team and efforts to expand as you grow.

 

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