There are many ways to reduce the food system’s emissions. But the most important thing is that people shift to a predominantly plant-based diet.
New research by an international team from the University of Oxford suggests that we must shift to a predominantly plant-based diet in order to save the Earth.
Science Journal published the paper. The paper reveals that cutting down on fossil fuel use is crucial to meet the global climate goals. However, it is not enough to transform the global food system.
Scientists say that even if fossil fuel emissions are stopped immediately, global food system emissions alone could cause global temperature rises of more than 1.5 degrees Celsius.
The Paris Climate Agreement aims to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C or 2°C above preindustrial levels. Extreme heatwaves, flooding and water scarcity will all result if global temperature rises beyond this limit.
By 2050, we must make changes in how we eat, what we eat, and how much waste we produce. We must also change the way food is made.
Within 30-45 years, plant-based foods are better for the planet
The report states that if current trends continue, emissions from food systems could surpass the 1.5degC goal in 30-45 years. They may even surpass the 2degC target in 90 years, even though all other greenhouse gas emission sources have been stopped.
We would be able to surpass the 1.5degC target within 10-20 years, and the 2degC goal by the end century, if other greenhouse gas emission sources were eliminated by 2050.
“Research shows that it is necessary to take coordinated actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from food systems,” said Dr. Michael J. Sullivan. It is possible to coordinate across sectors and between national government.
“But, these changes would have other benefits. You could reduce water pollution or scarcity. Additionally, increasing biodiversity and reducing the incidence of diet-related conditions like obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and other health issues.
Better for the Planet: Plant-based foods
Dr. Michael Clark comes from The Oxford Martin School and Nuffield Department of Population Health. He stated in a statement to PBN that discussions on climate change focus on reducing greenhouse gases from fossil fuels burning, such as transportation and energy production.
“But, our research stresses the importance of reducing global food system emissions.”
He said that there are many ways to rapidly reduce food emissions if we take action quickly. These include increasing crop yields and reducing food waste and loss.
He concluded that it was important for people to adopt a predominantly plant-based diet.