The best way for a regional government to reduce food waste is to set goals. Previous and common efforts focus on messaging and even in increasing the cost of managing food waste for households. New research shows that simply setting food waste reduction goals is enough and even better than other approaches.
This study investigates the effects of food waste (FW) reduction goal setting on waste generation. Using a unique dataset on the status of policy response with goals for household food waste reduction across Japanese municipalities, we estimate the causal effect of setting FW reduction goals in the public plan on household waste output. The results indicate that goal setting reduces waste output by 3.38 kg per capita per year, resulting in a reduction in economic loss due to the discarding of food of approximately US$ 689 million per year. Moreover, we find that goal setting has a larger influence than other waste reducing and recycling policies that do not include reduction goals, such as collection frequency and unit-based pricing systems. Our results highlight the importance of goal setting by local authorities in designing environmental policies for common social goals.
Yes, fertilizers exist that don’t make use of fossil fuels; however, the use of petoreluaem based fertilizers have become a mainstay of modern industrial agriculture. This use of fossil fuels for fertilizer has led to the agriculture sector’s carbon footprint being as large as it is. The transportation of the fuel then as a fertilizer leads to large bills and emissions. Now, a farm in Kenya has started producing fertilizer using solar power. The process uses water to create hydrogen which then gets some nitrogen to form liquid ammonia, a key fertilizer.
Green ammonia, made from water using clean power, promises to curb the climate impact of fertilizer. If produced on site, it could have the added benefit of insulating growers from supply shocks.
“The average bag of fertilizer in sub-Saharan Africa travels 10,000 kilometers,” Talus founder Hiro Iwanaga told Bloomberg. With a small green ammonia plant, like the one coming online in Kenya, “you can locally produce a critical raw material, carbon free
You love rice, everyone loves rice and we need more of it. Growing populations and the impact of the climate crisis on crops raises the stakes of rice cultivation. As a species we need to keep rice cheap, plentiful, and accessible to ensure a stable global food supply. India has stopped exporting rice which means other nations need to step up their exports. In Bali they recently ran an experiment in water rice fields and found ways to reduce water consumption and improving yields. This is a good finding for such a popular food.
The results at the end of the first harvest were astounding, the researchers say. They found that in the drained field, the release of GHG had dropped by 70%, and the farmer who owned the demonstration plot saw his crop yield in the drained field rise by more than 20%. The researchers knew why the methane had been reduced, but initially they couldn’t work out why the crop was so bountiful. Then Lansing reflected on a study he’d carried out in 2005 on the impacts of fertilizer runoff on coral reefs. By draining the field, he concluded, the fertilizer remained in soil rather than being washed into the river system.
Agrivoltaic setups aren’t new to regular readers of this site as we’ve seen many times that certain crops benefit from the shade solar panels provide; and, the solar panels benefit the farmers by producing clean energy. Now we know that hops, which flavour beer, thrive under solar panels. A German experiment with a special solar setup for hops has proven more successful than expected since the hops fared better against disease.
Which crops thrive under solar panels depends on many factors, and for a crop like hops a default solar field setup is not a good one. Hops like to grow straight up which means that the solar panels need to be elevated high off the ground. The hops then grow up to the solar panels and get lots of benefit from the cooling effects of the panels themselves.
The pilot project — a collaboration between Wimmer and local solar technology company Hallertauer Handelshaus — was set up in the fall of last year. The electricity made at this farm can power around 250 households, and the hops get shade they’ll need more often as climate change turbocharges summer heat.
Solar panels atop crops has been gaining traction in recent years as incentives and demand for clean energy skyrocket. Researchers look into making the best use of agricultural land, and farmers seek ways to shield their crops from blistering heat, keep in moisture and potentially increase yields. The team in Germany says its effort is the first agrivoltaic project that’s solely focused on hops, but projects have sprouted around the world in several countries for a variety of grains, fruits and vegetables.
Farmers are on the front line of climate change and to some extent they are accelerating it (deforestation and extensive pesticide use), but smart farmers are fighting climate change and improving their crop yield at the same time. A very successful natural intervention farmers can use are known as praire strips. These are long thin strips of land on a farmer’s field that hosts native species and provide lots of benefits to the surrounding land. They attract insects that help crops, help retain water, and keep the soil healthy in a way that chemical interventions can’t.
Insect and bird populations are more than 2x in prairie strips compared to mono-crop fields – providing vital defense against pests and other ecosystem services
Pollinators increase at around the same rate
Prairie strips turn a veritable green desert into a thriving ecosystem