There’s a lot going on today around climate change. We’re including three pieces and one infographic we think are important for you to read.
What’s the best way to reduce the climate impact of food? There has been much written about this topic recently. It’s especially timely given the global climate change conference being held in Paris. Agriculture puts food on our tables…but some research indicates it may be responsible for between 1/5th and 1/3rd of all manmade greenhouse gas emissions (this includes industries that support agriculture). How can emissions be reduced? And what food choices can consumers make that will help reduce their carbon footprint in a meaningful way? UC Merced professor Elliott Campbell has been conducting research that focuses on evaluating a range of factors, from biofuels to local food. He’s recently published some of his findings in The Conversation. Some takeaways? While more research is warranted, it appears there are advantages to shifting to more plant-based food choices. Food miles may not have as large an impact as previously thought (there are exceptions). And per Campbell, there is “untapped potential for locally produced food to deliver carbon savings around water and fertilizer.” This is an interesting read. Campbell’s work is part of the University of California’s Global Food Initiative, which seeks to address one of the most compelling issues of our time: how to sustainably and nutritiously feed a growing world population.
As big food feels the threat of climate change, companies speak up. In the future, climate change may impact your access to certain foods. Big food companies know it and are concerned. Multinational companies may be in a unique position to see global patterns of climate change, because they are sourcing products from all around the globe. And now, some of the largest companies are speaking up. Last month, ten global food companies (including Mars, General Mills and Nestle) “released a letter calling climate change a threat to the world’s food supply.” A great piece by Dan Charles for NPR.
Climate talks: UN warns 4C rise will have dire effects on world hunger. The United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) is warning that climate change is already stretching humanitarian resources. The WFP says that “warming could cause a ‘semi-permanent food disaster’ in parts of the world.” Conflict, extreme weather events and other factors are leaving millions unable to cope. An important piece that confirms what many have thought. John Vidal is environmental editor for The Guardian.
— World Food Programme (@WFP) December 1, 2015
You can follow the Paris talks on Twitter #COP21.
See you tomorrow.