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Food and Low Carbon Cooking

Reducing your daily emissions through informed food and cooking decisions. Food and Low Carbon Cooking. Climate Master Program. Food is 13% of our Carbon footprint. 8 tons of GHGs/year (Average American household) 7 tons = production 3 tons CO 2 1.6 tons Methane 2.1 tons Nitrous Oxide

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Food and Low Carbon Cooking

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  1. Reducing your daily emissions through informed food and cooking decisions Food and Low Carbon Cooking Climate Master Program

  2. Food is 13% of our Carbon footprint • 8 tons of GHGs/year (Average American household) • 7 tons = production • 3 tons CO2 • 1.6 tons Methane • 2.1 tons Nitrous Oxide • Remaining 1% = HFCs and other industrial gasses Climate Master Program: Food

  3. How do we know what to do? Questions we face • Do animal products have more GHGs than vegetable based? • Are whole foods better? • What impact does packaging have? • How important are food miles? • Organic – does it affect the climate? • Does seasonal matter? • Does cooking method matter? http://barfblog.foodsafety.ksu.edu/tags/local/ Climate Master Program: Food

  4. The Big Picture Climate Master Program: Food

  5. Food is 13% of US GHG Emissions Climate Master Program: Food

  6. GHG’s from food are not just CO2 Climate Master Program: Food

  7. Emissions split between pre-and post-farm Climate Master Program: Food

  8. Energy use looks different than GHGs Energy expended in producing and delivering one food calorie in the U.S. (Figure from Heinberg and Bomford 2009, adapted from Heller and Keoleian 2000) Climate Master Program: Food

  9. Ask 4 simple questions about food impact • What are the inputs and emissions? • What is it? • How was it made? • Where will it go? • Where did it come from? Climate Master Program: Food

  10. What is it? Animal, Vegetable, Other? Climate Master Program: Food

  11. Animal based foods = more GHGs Climate Master Program: Food http://news.mongabay.com/2008/0602-ucsc_liaw_food_miles.html

  12. Animal based foods = more GHGs http://maps.grida.no/go/graphic/examples-of-ghg-emission-amounts-09 Climate Master Program: Food http://news.mongabay.com/2008/0602-ucsc_liaw_food_miles.html

  13. Animal foods create more emissions http://www.inhabitat.com/2008/07/24/spiffy-backpack-traps-bovine-gas/ http://www.physorg.com/news135003243.html Climate Master Program: Food

  14. Animal foods require more inputs • Animal based foods require more inputs than vegetable based foods • The food they eat must be grown • Transportation for the food • Care of the animals • More processing is required • Packaging is almost mandatory Climate Master Program: Food

  15. Eat less, but better • Poultry, fish and vegetable protein sources • Jury is out on organic Climate Master Program: Food

  16. How was it made? Organic, Industrial, Chemical Climate Master Program: Food

  17. Less processing = fewer GHGs • What energy inputs and emissions are associated with processing? • Food production accounts for 83% of total GHG emissions (6.8 tons/yr/ household) Climate Master Program: Food

  18. Common Processed Foods Include… • Milk, butter, yogurt • Snack foods • Tinned, frozen, dried foods • Breads, biscuits, crackers • Soda, bottled water • Meat • Sugar • Others • Apples vs. Apple sauce • Carrots vs. “baby” carrots • Prepared foods (e.g. frozen dinner) • Rice and pasta TIP: Everything is processed if it’s not whole and fresh. Foods you buy in sealed packages like cans and bags are processed. Climate Master Program: Food

  19. “Whole” Foods are less processed • Reduce energy and waste from packaging and processing http://foodjunta.wordpress.com/2008/04/11/bulk-foods-and-not-the-kind-you-get-at-costco/ Climate Master Program: Food

  20. Organic Foods may have fewer GHGs http://science.qj.net/index.php?bgid=359 http://www.mellowmonk.com/2006/03/alternate-take-on-organic.html Climate Master Program: Food

  21. Where will it go? Food Waste & Packaging Climate Master Program: Food

  22. Food Waste: Purchase what you Need! Climate Master Program: Food

  23. Wasted food produced GHGs • 12% of landfill material is food waste • This decomposes and produces methane • Scraps can be composted • Wasted food means wasted emissions Climate Master Program: Food

  24. More packaging = more GHGs • How much is there? • More than the food? • What is it made of? • Recycled/reused content? • What will happen to the packaging? • Compostable, reusable, recyclable, waste? Climate Master Program: Food

  25. Refuse or reuse to reduce GHGs Climate Master Program: Food

  26. Where did it come from? Transportation Climate Master Program: Food

  27. Transportation produces GHGs • How far? • What type of transport? • Is it refrigerated? Climate Master Program: Food

  28. Food miles play a minor role • Transportation = 11% of food GHG emissions • Farm to store = 4% of GHG emissions http://tipsquick.blogspot.com/2009/02/how-to-reduce-carbon-footprint.html Climate Master Program: Food

  29. Transport less impact than production • NZ and UK dairy production • even after taking into account the energy used to ship dairy products to the UK, the NZ dairy sector generates around three-quarters of the greenhouse gas emissions (per kilo of milk solids) produced by UK producers Climate Master Program: Food

  30. Local Foods • Support local economy • Strengthen food security http://lonesomewhistlefarm.com Climate Master Program: Food

  31. Out of season requires more transport or energy Xxxxx Climate Master Program: Food

  32. Cooking & Storing Climate Master Program: Food

  33. Low Carbon food storage • Refrigerators and freezers use more energy than any other appliance • 11% of household energy • Keep it full • It’s easier to keep stuff cool than air • Store to reduce food waste • Buy and use only what you need Climate Master Program: Food

  34. Low Carbon Cooking • Ovens – use the light, don’t open the door! • Cook several dishes at one time or cook larger portions • Bake with ceramic or glass pans • Use thermometers or timers to avoid overcooking • Don’t cover oven racks with foil • Turn off oven a few minutes before your food is ready • Microwaves use much less energy than conventional stoves. Unplug it to save phantom power load. • Good for reheating meals. • Thaw food first at room temperature • To cook faster, place on outer edges of tray Climate Master Program: Food

  35. General Low Carbon Cooking Tips • Use toaster oven for small meals • Keep appliances & cookware clean • Use residual heat • Use energy efficient appliances • Fully cover heating element with pot/pan • Use the right sized burner • Stagger dishes at different rack levels in oven • Glass & ceramic conduct heat the best • Cover pots, water boils more quickly • Thaw food first, then cook • Use pressure cookers. They use 50-75 % less energy Climate Master Program: Food

  36. Summary Climate Master Program: Food

  37. Top ways to reduce food GHGs • Less animal products • Minimally processed &packaged • Buy only what you need • Seasonal for local foods • Grown close to home (especially for veggie products) • Organic? Climate Master Program: Food

  38. Food Challenge • If vegetarian/vegan, for 5 days try to eat only unprocessed/unpackaged food. Include as many local foods as possible. • If you consume animal products, cut down your consumption by 3-4 meals for one week (e.g. substitute a veggie burger for beef, grill tofu instead of chicken, fry tempeh instead of fish, oatmeal instead of bacon & eggs) • For the very ambitious, cut down on unprocessed/unpackaged foods AND animal product consumption for the week. • Report back to the group your findings, challenges, and successes. Climate Master Program: Food

  39. Special Thanks Developed by the University of Oregon Climate Leadership Initiative by Shane DeMars, Mark Nystrom, Sarah Mazze, Stacy Vynne* *Some slides from presentation by Theresa Brand, Corvallis, OR Climate Master Trainer Climate Master Program: Food

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