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Interesting Concept, Counting the Carbon in your Food

Discussion in 'Other' started by ClissAT, Jun 2, 2019.

  1. ClissAT

    ClissAT Valued Member Premium Member GOLD

    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    Pomona, Qld
    This is a news item I read today so I don't know how long this link will remain viable for.


    We often count carbs. But what about counting the carbon in your food.
    Those of us here who read and contribute to this forum and Mark's website should have a smaller carbon footprint than the average person.
    But it would be interesting to find out for sure.
    The writer of the article stated that locally grown food did not necessarily contribute to a lower carbon footprint.

    So I wondered about my own garden. I reuse and recycle pretty much everything until it is completely used up or so worn out and broken it can nolonger be useful.
    So I'm talking about garden edging, stakes, tree nets, shade cloth, tools and the like.

    Where I come unstuck is the amount of fuel used to mow the orchard and garden areas.
    Still far less than most or all the people in my neighbourhood who seem hell-bent on creating green deserts devoid of all living creatures right down to the earthworms, bacteria and fungi in the soil.
    These people will mow two, three times weekly in the wet season and summer months because a few blades of grass are sticking up. And woe betide any grass or weed seedhead that dares thrust itself up into the light!

    I mow only when the grass has finished seeding which means it is far thicker than my neighbours' lawns and stays greener longer once the rain has stopped because there is a good thick layer of thatch covering the soil. Admittedly it doesn't have that freshly mown neat as a pin look to it but I don't care! And nor do my trees or horses!

    Weeds get to live at my place so they can work for me to bring nutrients to the surface when I pull out the mature weed right before it seeds. It goes into the compost or just onto the garden.

    So that all must limit my carbon footprint. I do use fertilizer, but sparingly even with my poor, overly iron rich soil. Fertilizer would have a large carbon footprint for sure and the author comments on the fact that most of the carbon consumed in growing food, is used at the farm. As opposed to say, the cost of transportation and cold storage.

    However I was very interested in the assessment of plastic wrap used by supermarkets as opposed to going to farmers markets and buying locally grown produce.
    If you took your own container or bottle, that should reduce your personal footprint.
    If you shopped at an organic supermarket where you can take your own container and the shop is geared up to use them, that would be a big help surely?

    But the bit about the amount of fuel used to travel a fair distance to a farmers market was a very valid concern I felt.
    I have long thought that driving here and there all over the place just to save a few bucks was not worth the effort or cost when fuel and car costs as well as extra time were all considered.

    One of the charts was interesting. It was the one showing the carbon cost of alcoholic drinks.
    The author states that a spirit drink is less than a beer but I beg to differ!
    The spirit drink is not only the spirit but also the mixer and in anycase the volume of the whole drink would be less than the can of beer. So the total carbon would be over the .75kg/co for the spirit mix drink as opposed to the whole can of beer at around the .5kg/co mark.

    How does your household and garden stack up?

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