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Emissions Reductions

Geologist, Alasdair Skelton, explores five categories of emissions reductions: transport, food, housing, shopping and public service and investments.
-There are three solutions to the climate crisis. Emission reduction, natural climate solutions and technical climate solutions. Emission reductions are by far the most important. They should account for 70% of the solution. How do I reduce my emissions?
I look at five categories: Transport, food, housing, shopping as well as public services and investments. Let’s look at one at a time. If we begin with transport… I can reduce my transport emissions effectively by taking the train- -rather than the plane or the car. By doing so, I can cut my transport related emissions by a factor of five.
The next category is food. It’s really simple to reduce our emissions when we think about what we eat. By reducing the amount of meat we eat, considerably, and by eating- -more vegetarian, we can reduce our emissions by up to a factor of ten. But does it taste nice when we reduce the meat? Let’s ask Miriam. -I think it does, Alisdair! It just so happens I’ve got some lunch for us. I have three wraps, one for me, one for you, and one for Kristina later.
They all have the same base: A lot of greens. Lettuce, cucumber and tomato. That will give us some crunch and consistency. Then we have one with a little bit of chicken, but that’s a luxury now- -if we’re thinking sustainability and climate-wise, so just a little. The next two are bean-based. One has falafel, with garlic, parsley and herbs. The other one is a bean-mix. We fried up some beans with cumin and chili, and stuck them in- -a wrap for a tasty and convenient lunch! -That sounds really delicious! I’m looking forward to eating lunch! -Brilliant. But before we do that… how else can I reduce my emissions? -The next thing we can look at is housing.
We have to think about where our emissions come from at home. The main thing is the energy we use. If we stop using fossil fuels, for heating our homes, for example. If we stop using coal, oil and gas, and start using renewables like wind and solar power- -we can actually cut our emissions almost by a factor of 100 for our housing. Then we have shopping - we can use this really simple phrase. Reduce, reuse and recycle - in that order.
Reduce: Don’t buy the things you don’t really want. Buy stuff you really need.
Reuse: Don’t throw it away if it still works. Use it again.
Recycle: When it no longer works or when it can’t be repaired, that’s when you recycle.
The last category is the challenging one: Public services and investments. Those are things like roads, or public transport- -stuff that the government provides.
A lot of raw material goes into it: Concrete, energy and steel. And it’s not easy for you and I to reduce those emissions ourselves. Instead, we have to influence the government to think about- -how to minimize emissions for public services and investments. How do we do that? You have a voice, you can vote and speak out. The way to influence decision makers is by making your voice heard.

Of the three solutions to the climate crisis, emissions reduction is by far the most important.

Geologist, Alasdair Skelton, examines five categories for emissions reductions:

Transport – By taking the train rather than the plane or the car, we can cut our emissions from transport by a factor of 5.

Food – By reducing the amount of meat we eat and eating more vegetarian, we can reduce our emissions from food by up to a factor of 10.

Housing – By switching from fossil fuels to renewables (wind, solar) we can reduce our emissions from powering our homes by a factor of 100.

Shopping – By not buying stuff we don’t need, but re-using stuff rather than throwing it away, and be recycling, we can reduce our emissions.

Public services and investments – These are emissions linked to our country’s infrastructure. These emissions come from raw materials, such as concrete, energy, steel. Emissions reductions require policy decisions, which you might be able to influence by making your voice heard.

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