It’s a well-known fact that we need to be doing more to tackle climate change. That’s why many people have decided to adopt the philosophy of climatarianism. The idea is that individuals make climate-conscious decisions throughout their daily lives. This could range from their diet and shopping habits to travel and the home.
Food supply chains and production processes create 20-30% of all global carbon emissions
Predicted to be one of 2022’s biggest food trends, climatarianism could be the perfect option for those looking to reduce their carbon footprint without cutting out whole food groups. Food supply chains and production processes create 20-30% of all global carbon emissions, while following a climatarian diet can reduce your CO2 emissions by 1.5 tonnes annually.
Climatarians tend to opt for locally produced seasonal fruits and vegetables grown without the use of pesticides. Swapping beef and lamb for pork and poultry, and eating more lentils, seeds, and beans are a great way to source your protein in an environmentally friendly way.
They also look out for foods with less plastic packaging and try to use every part of the ingredient, such as the apple core and cheese rind.
You might remember the banned 2018 Iceland advert which highlighted palm oil’s contribution to deforestation, natural habitat destruction, and higher carbon emissions; for these reasons climatarians tend to avoid foods with palm oil as well.
climatarianism isn’t just a diet it is also a lifestyle
However, climatarianism isn’t just a diet it is also a lifestyle. Climatarians will try to move around by bike, walking, public transport or electric scooter. Wherever possible for longer journeys they will take the train instead of a plane as this has been proven to be much more energy efficient. For example, Amsterdam to Brussels by plane generates between 26 and 56 kg of CO2, while doing the same journey by train produces emissions of just 1.7 to 2 kg.
In Nottingham alone there’s ‘Waste Nott’, ‘Shop Zero’, ‘The Good Weigh’ and the University Student Union’s own ‘Portland Zero’
The rise in zero-waste and plastic free shops over the past year give people ample opportunity to make more environmentally friendly swaps. This could range from filling up bottles and boxes with everyday goods rather than purchasing them in single use plastic, to buying reusable period products and metal razors. In Nottingham alone there’s ‘Waste Nott’, ‘Shop Zero’, ‘The Good Weigh’ and the University Student Union’s own ‘Portland Zero’.
In the home, climatarians could switch to LED lights, ensure their windows are double glazed, invest in a smart metre and reduce the use of their tumble dryer to maximise energy efficiency. They might also look out for certification marks, such as EU Ecolable on electronics, DIY tools, materials, detergents, and clothes.
There is only so much that we as individuals can do if policymakers continue to be indifferent to the reality of global warming
Although encouraging people to consider the environment in their daily lives is great, we can’t forget that the big systemic change to reverse global warming must come from governments and big corporations. Guilt-tripping consumers is more likely to have the opposite effect of promoting climatarianism. There is only so much that we as individuals can do if policymakers continue to be indifferent to the reality of global warming.
Overall, climatarianism seems to be one of the most accessible climate-conscious lifestyles. It encourages people to consider making small changes in their daily routines to reduce their environmental impact without the strict rules and pressure to be perfect. In fact, you’re probably already a climatarian so why not keep making gradual environmentally focused changes to your lifestyle?
Featured image courtesy of Dean Xavier via Unsplash. Image license found here. No changes were made to this image.
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