The problem of climate change is complex, global, and long-term, and therefore difficult to grapple with for politicians, scientists, teachers, and students alike. Teachers in particular face the problem of presenting climate change in a way that is not abstract and distant. To engage the intellect as well as emotions, students need to feel personally involved. One way to achieve this personal involvement is to link climate change to students' individual lives. Such a relationship can be created using a personal greenhouse gas budget, comprising ail emissions caused by a student over one year. A personal greenhouse gas calculator was developed at the School of Physics, University of Sydney, in the form of a computer spreadsheet, and applied in university teaching. This calculator does not only address emissions from energy use, but also those emissions embodied in goods and services. Embodied emissions are often ignored when climate change is related to lifestyles, As its normative part, the calculator states a benchmark of 3.5 t CO2 per person per year, based on the principle of global equity and sustainability. First experiences show that most students agree with that benchmark, and accept responsibility for embodied emissions. However, their own emissions results exceed by far the equitable and sustainable budget. This experience triggers various feelings, ranging from surprise and motivation, to guilt, denial, self-defence, cynicism, anger, and frustration. In contrast to a model where teaching is seen as transmission of information, this personal and provocative approach creates an emotional response, which affects memory, which in turn holds out the promise of long-term change.