Globe Climate: Bringing the fight against climate change into the kitchen (and into your stomach)

If you’re reading this on the web or someone emailed you this newsletter, you can sign up for Globe Climate and all Globe newsletters here.

Good afternoon, and welcome to Globe Climate, a newsletter on climate change, the environment and resources in Canada.

For Canadians who want to reduce their carbon footprint, there are now, as the saying goes, apps for that.

Here are some apps you can incorporate into your life to help you understand how you might be able to make changes to track and reduce your carbon footprint, which has been hard for people to grasp. Keep us posted on how it goes!

Now we’ll catch up with you on other news.

Noteworthy report this week:

  1. Hunt: The BC Wildlife Federation’s volunteer-run training offers a number of entry-level courses in trapping, game care, marksmanship, fly tying, wilderness survival and first care. In recent years, there has been a steady increase in interest.
  2. Energy: Alberta’s energy sector pressures Ottawa to clarify how climate goals will be met; Canada’s 2030 climate goals for the oil and gas industry are not achievable, according to government analysis.
  3. Flood: Who is responsible for repairing British Columbia’s flood defenses? In the communities close to the “orphan dykes”, no one is really sure. Also: B.C. Siblings’ home wrecked by failing orphan dike
  4. From the Narwhal: Breathtaking pictures. Adventurous boat trips. A mission to save the planet. Young people were drawn to Pacific Wild, but many describe a workplace culture of bullying and harassment
  5. Wildlife: Feral pigs are invasive, destructive and dangerous, and their populations in Canada are exploding out of control. How can we fight back?

Artwork by Steven P. Hughes

A deeper dive

What is the role of food in climate change?

Sierra Bein is the author of Globe Climate. For this week’s deeper dive, she talks about sustainable food and making your kitchen more eco-friendly

The food industry embraces sustainability. What does that mean? That’s what Food Journalist Ann Hui tried to answer this week. But it’s a difficult task, because there is no consensus on a definition of sustainability, even among farmers, let alone unanimity across the food system.

In the urgent race to tackle climate change, it’s a challenge that experts say must be overcome. In order to move on to the urgent work of monitoring and implementing sustainability throughout the food chain, there needs to be agreement on a definition.

In fact, it’s a question that a group of more than 80 Canadian organizations have spent the last few years wrestling with. The group released a proposal last week called the National Agrifood Performance Index. But can an industry-led group be counted on to hold itself accountable? Ann explores all of this and more, read her full story here.

Meanwhile, in your own kitchen, we have more ways to change your habits at home

Making green choices can happen on many fronts: bringing reusable bins to the grocery store, cleaning with green products, cooking on induction, throwing away as little as possible, becoming a locavore and adhering to the 100-mile diet, and expanding your repertoire of kitchen so you know how to cook delicious meals from modest food scraps. Here are some starting points:

  • Step 1: Shake up your buying habits. Some like that big Costco run in bulk, while others shop every day. To mitigate the waste of your eyes being bigger than your stomach, do some “pre-shopping” in your own kitchen. Look in your fridge and pantry before you go to the store.
  • Step 2: Try a flexitarian menu. The biggest impact we can have is buying more plants and less meat. trying to adopt a more flexitarian way of eating where meat could play second or third fiddle to fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains.
  • Step 3: Stick to your budget. There’s a downside to eating sustainably today: A recent study found that plant-based products are on average 38% more expensive than their animal-based counterparts, despite ever-rising meat prices. To mitigate this, try using a simple food rotation system. Eat the perishables first and reuse every part you can.
  • Step 4: Buy locally and eat in season. One of the most important things you can do is minimize food miles, and part of that is teaching people how to cook simple recipes with everyday ingredients.

Read the full kitchen guide here, plus seven ways to make a big impact and how to be a more eco-friendly shopper and home cook.

What else did you miss

Opinion and analysis

Kathleen McDonnell: Forget swimming pools – give me a cold lake any day of the week

JP Gladu and Ken Coates: Managing indigenous resources ensures cultural survival, with benefits passed on to all

John Gorsky: Why Canada can meet its oil and gas emissions targets

Marcus Gee: Toronto needs to make the little things — like opening water fountains during a heat wave — right

The Editorial Board: Why is it so difficult to reduce carbon emissions? Consider the 5,000 pound piece of metal in your driveway

Green investment

Canada’s accounting and auditing bodies set up local standards board for sustainability metrics as investors and regulators call for better transparency and comparability of main environmental and social data of companies.

The new group, the Canadian Sustainability Standards Board (CSSB), will work with the new International Sustainability Standards Board (ISSB). This is part of a broader international effort to standardize a range of climate-related reporting metrics. Once this framework is created, the CSSB will review them to ensure they are suitable for the Canadian market and then approve them for use.

The CSSB is formed in response to recommendations from the Independent Review Committee for Standards in Canada (CIRCS), which reviews processes for setting accounting, auditing and assurance standards. Its final report is expected this summer, but the group decided to speed up the formation of the CSSB given the momentum of the subject.

make waves

We will be taking a break from posting profiles this summer! But we’re always looking for great people to feature. Contact us to have someone included in our “making waves” section after Labor Day.

Do you know a committed person? Someone who represents the real drivers of change in the country? Email us at [email protected] to tell us about it.

Picture of the week

A cougar licks frozen mackerel, as zookeepers monitor the animals during heatwave conditions sweeping France, at the Vincennes zoo on the outskirts of Paris on June 18, 2022. Spain, France and d Other Western European countries are preparing for a sweltering June weekend that is set to break records, with wildfires and warnings about the effects of climate change. The weather on June 18, 2022 will represent a peak of a June heatwave that is in line with scientists’ predictions that such phenomena will now occur earlier in the year thanks to global warming.GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT/AFP/Getty Images

Guides and explainers

Find Globe Climate

We want to hear from you. Email us: [email protected]. Do you know someone who needs this newsletter? Send them to our Newsletters page.

Teresa H. Sadler