Here’s Why Food Waste is a Major Climate Change Issue

Dec 9, 2023

Food loss and waste releases methane, a gas 80 times more potent to the atmosphere than carbon dioxide.

In the drive to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, most people focus on the biggest source of them — the burning of fossil fuels, which is responsible for 75 per cent of global emissions.

But there’s one source of significant emissions that many believe needs to be addressed, one that largely goes unnoticed, yet we see it every day — food waste.

Food releases large amounts of methane, a greenhouse gas that is 80 times more potent in terms of warming than carbon dioxide as it breaks down over 20 years. It traps more heat in the atmosphere per molecule than carbon dioxide, according to the UN Environment Program.

And the more food that is wasted, the more methane it produces.

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