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Out of the first one hundred solutions that drawdown proposes is Reduced
Food waste. To us, food is so common and abundant that we often take for
granted the waste that comes along with it. There are several staggering
statistics that are associated with the amount of food we waste, and its impact
to climate change. One of the most overwhelming statistics in my opinion is
that over thirty-three percent of all the food that’s produced in the planet
never reaches our forks. Whether its because they’ve become spoiled along he
transit, or just not wanted and thrown out by wealthier individuals, around one
and a half billion tons of food are wasted per year, which is equivalent to one
TRILLION dollars, and that’s just the food. Water wastage is another huge
aspect. According to the United nations report, the amount of water that’s wasted
throughout the year would be enough to fill the Volga River. Overall, wasting
of food and water results in 3.3 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide emitted
each year.

Because such a large amount of food is wasted each year, it makes
reduction of food waste an extremely important category to try to improve on. One
of the reasons that its so important is because all of that food and water go
to waste, so does all the production, resources, energy, and money that went
into it as well, and the further the food gets until it gets thrown out, the
more resources it wastes.  In order to
reduce food waste, drawdown proposes that we must improve storage and transport
systems, generate public awareness, and change consumer behavior. Based on the
global food markets statistics and projections from now until the year 2050,
three outcomes/scenarios were developed. The first scenario is the most conceivable,
and that’s states that with the above mentioned implementations we will have a
fifty percent reduction in total global food loss and wastage by the year 2050.

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The second scenario is proposed by drawdown themselves and states that a
seventy-five percent reduction in total global food loss and wastage will be achieved
by the year 2050. The last and most optimistic scenario states that not only
will one hundred percent of global food loss and wastage be avoided, but world
hunger will also be eliminated!

To calculate the results of the three respective scenario’s the
amount of emission as well as the integration cost had to be calculated as
well. In order to calculate the emissions the emissions factors were multiplied by the
baseline annual food demand by country and commodity to get the carbon
dioxide-equivalent values for food items over time. In order to determine the integration cost, project drawdown
broke down the food loss and wastage into different commodity types.

According to the calculations done by
drawdown, the plausible scenario projects the total amount of food waste to be
reduced by over twenty-two million metric tons, but more importantly, dropping  the amount of carbon dioxide by over seventy
gigatons by the year 2050.

If the drawdown scenario would come
into fruition we would reduce food and waste by thirty-two million metric tons,
thereby reducing the amount od carbon dioxide emissions by eighty-three

The final scenario was a much more
unlikely scenario, but nonetheless we would reduce food waste by forty-one
million metric tons, reducing the amount of carbon emissions by ninety-three


It is evident that food waste in an
extremely negative concept that has detrimental affects on both the environment
and the economy. Food waste causes us to superfluously waste land, water and
energy, while only increasing the amount of carbon dioxide that is emitted into
our planet, when the social cost of which is approximately two and a half
trillion dollars.

While this is such an enormous factor
on our planet, as economists we have a big problem with this proposal. Because of
the severity of the proposal, and the variety of the costs there would be world
wide, we just don’t have an approximate cost to weigh against the benefits of
this great plan.



Another one of drawdowns interesting solutions of a more simple
one, Food Composting. Most people have heard of composting, many of them may
even have a compost bin, but nonetheless many of them have know clue what
composting actually is. Composting is basically natures was of recycling. Composting
takes almost half of the solids globally produced (food waste, manure, leaves etc.),
and biodegrades them. Uneducated people on the topic often say “why do I need
compost bins when I could just throw my food in the garbage and it will biodegrade
there?”, but they couldn’t be more wrong. While it is true that the items will
eventually biodegrade, much of them will end up in landfills where as opposed
to at a composting plant decompose without oxygen therefor creating methane
gas, which is even worse that carbon dioxide. When items are composted and
decomposed by the natural biological process many microorganisms including
fungi and bacteria break down the items and metabolizes the microorganisms. The
leftover nutrients are the put back into the ground, and help support plant


In order to find the justification and results for composting, the
first thing that needed to be done was to forecast the entire globes urban
organic waste from now until 2050. After that was calculated the current
composting rate had to be determined for now and the future.

After all the variables were calculated, there were once again
three scenarios depicting the change that would arise from increased
composting. The first scenario is the most plausible, assuming composting rates
rise from the current levels to thirty-eight percent in middle to low income
countries, and fifty-seven percent in high income countries by the year 2050. According
to this situation global compost production would increase from one hundred and
six million metric tons per year to a whopping seven hundred and fifty eight
million in 2050.

The second scenario (the drawdown scenario) assumes that compost
rates are at full capacity (one hundred percent),the market value of compost
rises, and there’s subsidized source separation. In the case the amount of
compost produced in the year 2050 would be a little over one gigaton.


Another one of the more interesting parts of this drawdown solution
was calculating the financial aspect of the proposal as well. In order to do
that the first thing that was done was calculating and comparing the costs of
creating and running compost facilities vs creating and running  landfills that are the same size.



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