Archive for Carbon footprint
We’ve alluded to the idea that “food miles” need to be treated with caution elsewhere. Here’s another example: the Co-operative Group’s annual sustainability report contains details of a “life-cycle” analysis (LCA) of the amount of embedded carbon in a humble 400g punnet of strawberries.
The domestic “Ava” offering, grown at Blairgowrie farm in Scotland, contains 850g of carbon. The alternative “Sabrosa” strawberries, from Spain, contain only 600g of carbon. If you’re basing your purchase decision solely on global warming impact you should buy the Spanish version. Read the rest of this entry »
According to a recent report, upland sheep farming is good news for the environment. A Northumberland sheep farmer commissioned a report looking into the greenhouse gas emissions from two farms. The report, produced by the Food Animal Initiative 2008, makes use of the Country Land and Business Association‘s CALM calculator, which was designed to enable farmers to work out their annual GHG emissions.
The two farms were found to have yearly emissions of 3.2 tonnes CO2e per hectare, which the report claims compares favourably with the national average of 4 and 6 tCO2e for other grazing LFA (Less Favoured Area) and lowland grazing systems, respectively. [Note, though, the recent Natural England study from which the report draws its background information actually gives an average value of 2.5 tCO2e per annum.] Read the rest of this entry »
For some, there’s nothing like a real Christmas tree. The muddiness of choosing a fine specimen (maybe even cutting it down), pushing it through that cool wrapping tube thing, struggling to get it home, cutting a further three feet off it to get it through the doorway, and finally making it stand up properly, are all part of the ritual.
The reward is a piece of “nature” brought indoors, infusing our festive memories with a richly resinous scent. Then in the New Year, the challenge of removing the by-then withering tree without losing every remaining needle into the carpet surely provides one of January’s earliest joys.
Other people just fetch the plastic tree down from the loft, plug it in, and pack it away again afterwards. Bah! Read the rest of this entry »