New report: Nordic diet can reduce emissions
A new report from AirClim, “Future Nordic Diets”, explores the subject of sustainable diets and the impact they could have on greenhouse gas and nitrogen emissions.
In this project, an agricultural mass flow model is used to assess two future food system scenarios for the Nordic countries Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden (hereafter “the Nordic countries”). In these scenarios, livestock feed production competes less with human food production and the majority of food is produced within the Nordic countries using organic farming practices.
The results show that the scenarios would be able to produce enough nutritious food for 31-37 million people in the Nordic countries. The scenarios would thus be able to support the projected population in 2030, albeit with changes in consumption patterns. Consumption of meat decreased by 81-90 per cent from current consumption levels; substituted by cereals, legumes and vegetable oil. The scenarios also included more vegetables than currently consumed in order to comply with the Nordic nutrition recommendations.
Estimates of current greenhouse gas emissions from the agricultural production of food consumed in the Nordic countries range between 1,310 and 1,940 kg CO2-eq per person per year. The greenhouse gas emissions from agricultural production in the scenarios were estimated at 310–700 kg CO2-eq per diet per year.
Agricultural emissions of pollutants that cause acidification and eutrophication, especially ammonia, are also significantly lower in the scenarios than they are today.