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Discussions Discussion Off the table?
Camilla H_EK11, Oct. 9, 2013

Hello, everybody! My name is Camilla and I live in Sweden. After I found out my environmental footprint I was surprised and thoughtful. My score was significantly lower then my region’s average score of 7305kg of carbon dioxide release. My result was only 4684kg. Even if my footprint accidentally happened to be lower than average, it is still positive, at least for my ego. After some analysis concerning why it was so low I came to the excellent conclusion: I do not waste resources.
I do not go shopping so often, I turn the lights off when leaving a room, I do not let the water flush while I brush my teeth, I do not spend hours in the shower every day etc. I believe it is all these small every day tasks that matters the most for the environment because they simply are so many. There is so many minor differences you can change in your lifestyle to make it more environmental and to get a better conscious about yourself. It is important to enjoy life and not exaggerate about the environment but it is also of vital meaning to think about others in other countries and to help the world by contributing with a sustainable lifestyle. It is not that hard. You do not have to stop showering and become a vegetarian for lifetime but just by considering how you use the earth’s resources could make a big difference.

My highest carbon dioxide release was the topic food. It is not news that the world’s food production has become a huge environmental threat and issue. Deforestation, starvation, poverty, carbon dioxide releases, animal cruelty, lack of standards and moral are only a few of the consequences of the worldwide growing food production. Especially the meat production (for more info: http://www.landroots.org.uk/, http://woods.stanford.edu/environmental-venture-projects/consequences-increased-global-meat-consumption-global-environment) is expected to DOUBLE by the year 2020! This is insane! How is that even going to work? The human population is getting bigger and bigger, how are we going to be able to produce enough food without harming the environment?
To solve this upcoming, or already ongoing to be exact, serious complications we must start being sustainable and stop thinking about only the economic gains. We must think and consider how we would want the world to look for our grandchildren and further on in the future generations. It wont be a nice place for them to live on if we continue in the same speed and method as we do today. Even if we become rich during our lives it is simply not worth it, destroying our only world. I do not believe that if the whole world converted to vegetarianism would make the world a paradise. It will not work that way, changes must be done slowly but firmly. One aspect about the food production is that SOOO much food is produced and SOOO much food is thrown away, before being used. It is a total waste and it affects our environment massively. This is a smart list containing 10 tips how to reduce your food waste at home! homehttp://www.thedailygreen.com/going-green/community-tips/reduce-food-waste-460708

Camilla H_EK11
Comments (2)
  • Cat G Cat G Oct. 9, 2013
    Wow! Your carbon footprint is significantly lower than mine. The average for where I live, in Texas in the United states, is just over 24,000 kq of carbon dioxide release. Compare this to the world average of a little over 3,000 kg and the United States average carbon footprint is excessive. In order for the world to reduce our carbon footprint we must also focus on countries such as the United States and reducing our carbon footprint. Post Consumers states that if everyone lived like Americans, the Earth's annual resources would be depleted by March. https://www.postconsumers.com/education/what-country-has-the-largest-carbon-footprint/
  • Kristin G Kristin G Oct. 21, 2013
    Hi Camilla! My name is Kristin and I live in California, USA. Our carbon footprints are about the same: mines came to 4151 kg a year. However, I found that food was one of my lower categories. I believe that this is because of the area I live in. Salinas Valley, California is known as the “Salad Bowl of the World.” (More information/map available here: http://www.freshexpress.com/YourSaladStory/our-growing-regions/salinasvalley.aspx) 80% of fruits and vegetables consumed in California are locally grown. In many towns we even have farmer's markets where local growers from around the area bring their produce to sell. We also consume a lot of organic food in my area. It is also easy to obtain seafood, especially Dungeness Crabs, along the San Francisco Bay. (http://localfoods.about.com/od/findlocalfoodsbystate/tp/californiaguide.htm) I've deduced that food production and it's impact on the environment really does depend on where you live.

    On that note, however, I do feel that we all can do our part to reduce the impact of food production on our world, no matter how low our carbon emissions already are. One point that you brought up which I absolutely agree with is that we are wasting too much food. In my household, we try to take only what we know we can eat, and always try to use up leftovers. I have noticed, though, that a lot of our food has gone uneaten and been thrown in the trash lately. Reasons for this include buying too much food and having it expire before anyone eats it, sticking it at the back of the fridge and forgetting that it's there, or not storing it properly to avoid spoiled food.

    I remember in fifth grade my school took my class to an environmental camp where we lived in cabins for a week and learned about biology. In the cafeteria, there was a trash bin, a recycle bin, and a compost bin. Our job was to separate out all our waste into those three bins and the goal was to have there be next to nothing in the trash bin (there was a very low line drawn on the bin that we had to have the food be under). It was very difficult because kids often took more than they could finish eating and not all the food was compostable. There were even some kids who were just too lazy to separate things out and would toss their entire plate into the trash. But finally, on the last day of camp, we managed to get our waste below the line. Everyone erupted in cheers. It was wonderful and we were all so proud of ourselves.

    I hope that little by little, everyone will begin to think that way, imagining the little line on their trash bin and smiling as they recycle. I hope that one day, billions of people will feel joy as they help save their planet. But until then, I will sit back and just do my little part to hep out.

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Discussions Discussion Let’s go environmentally responsible
Beth Bernstein, April 13, 2012

Eat less meat to prevent climate disaster, study warns…

Fertilisers used in growing feed crops for cattle produce the most potent of the greenhouse gases causing climate change

A study published in Environmental Research Letters warns that drastic changes in food production and at the dinner table are needed by 2050 in order to prevent catastrophic global warming.

It’s arguably the most difficult challenge in dealing with climate change: how to reduce emissions from food production while still producing enough to feed a global population projected to reach 9 billion by the middle of this century.


More on the impact of food prodction on climate change below…

Beth Bernstein
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Discussions Discussion Food and Gender
Emily Nelsen, Nov. 8, 2011

Good background article about food and gender and their interactions. Its interesting that this stuff involves everyday life but we take it for granted. For me its interesting food for thought- pun intended!

Across many cultures and epochs, people have constituted, expressed, and bridged gender differences through foodways—the beliefs and behaviors surrounding the production, distribution, and consumption of food. Through the division of labor, alimentary exchanges, access to food, and the meanings surrounding eating, men and women have enacted their identity, roles, and power.
……. more of the article after the link:

Emily Nelsen

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