Go Green With Your Food Choices

Vegetable GardenBefore an audience that waffled between egg-throwing and enrapture, Green Blizzard presented ideas on how to reduce one’s carbon footprint in terms of their food and water consumption – which coincidentally is this year’s theme of the Camden Conference – The Global Politics of Food and Water.

The talk started in answering, Green Blizzard’s purpose in life, “what exactly is CO2 and how much as humans do we naturally emit into the atmosphere? And what can we do to curb it?”  The fossil fuels we burn in heating our homes, driving our cars and trucks, and all the embodied energy that went into producing our consumer goods and our foods upon combustion simply combines with two molecules of oxygen and floats away.   OK, so what’s the big deal?

The problem is that this CO2 was previously inactive, buried deep in the earth but then extracted and burned. Whereas, the pre-existing carbon in our life’s system (plants, soils, and in the air) is what is referred to an active carbon and naturally in the cycle. It’s simply that humans are artificially adding to the CO2 active balance, tipping its natural balance.

Simply put, … CO2 is unrecognized pollution.

Naysayers to climate change will say that it’s a natural cycle and yes the earth has natural cycles, but these current levels are historically well above the average range measured in ancient ice.   These naysayers have their heads buried in the sand while loading chanting nay, nay, nay. 

In fact, here’s a climate-change joke I heard recently… A climate scientist and a climate change denier walk into a bar. The denier says, bartender, show me your strongest whiskey. The bartender says, this one here. It’s 95 percent alcohol. The denier slams down his fist and leaves the bar in a hurry. The scientist says, you know, that’s the problem with these guys. You show them the proof, and they still don’t buy it.

Compare and Calculate Your Carbon Footprint For example, you want to understand conceptually how much CO2 either you or your family pump out into the atmosphere on an annual basis – your carbon footprint.  There is a slew of free carbon calculators out there on the Internet. All of which will give you varying estimates on your output, but it’s at best a rough estimate, a gauge to give you a conceptual starting point. One carbon calculator that we feel works particularly well is the Nature Conservancy calculator (link) – but like many of these freebies – they are seeking guilt carbon-offsetting donations to keep them in business.

The two personas that we measured were Tim Treehugger and Sam SUV. Tim Treehugger lives in a detached single family home with four family members, has outfitted his home with electrical saving bulbs and appliances and coaxes his family members to turn off all unused electrical devices, drives a well maintained Prius a modest number of miles annually (5,000), avoids red meats and eats locally grown organic food, recycles, and composts. Tim’s annual CO2


At the other end of the spectrum is living large, Sam SUV,  who basically doesn’t care about electrical consumption, drives a low mpg SUV great distances, flies too far away resorts,  occasionally recycles, eats a ton of red meat (and probably will never visit this website and gleam the knowledge embedded in the hundreds of articles always available – sorry sap!).  Sam’s annual CO2 output.


Carbon Footprint For Sam SUV

So compare and calculate your carbon footprint to see how you measure up purely in terms of your personal footprint, OR, if you want to establish a benchmark from which to measure your progress, try this free online carbon calculator at The Nature Conservancy. Check out the richness and depth of articles on the Green Blizzard Homepage.

Don’t Miss: Supermarket Carbon Footprint, What Is Raw Milk, Composting During The Fall and Winter.


Do us a favor and tell your friends, neighbors, and co-workers about Green Blizzard and encourage them to visit our website.


About the author

Keith Blizzard

A life-long environmentalist, Keith set out on the never ending journey of adjusting his lifestyle to a more sustainable one, with a goal of annually shrinking his carbon footprint. When he looked around for a dependable source of meaningful carbon footprint reduction ideas, it was pretty lame - so he launched Green Blizzard loaded with eco-friendly lifestyle tweaks. When he's not managing Green Blizzard, you'll find him on the trails around Mid Coast Maine with his trusty trail companion mutt, Moose.