Climate Change and Food Systems

As part of Climate Week NYC, the Human Impacts Institute launched its Ten Days of Climate Action. The goal of the Ten Days was to use creative art installations around varying topics concerning climate change to inspire curiosity and conversations with passers-by on often overwhelming issues. Community members were also asked to become a part of the solution through a variety of public engagement activities, such as video journals and petitions.

The Ten Days was a great success, engaging tens of thousands of locals and tourists alike with thought-provoking art and conversations on climate throughout the City.

Weren’t able to make it? See what we did for our inaugural Ten Days below and take ten climate actions today!

Day 3: Climate and Food

Day three brought the Human Impacts Institute to Manhattan’s Union Square with twenty-four photos from artist Douglas Gayeton’s Lexicon of Sustainability project, which were on display to portray the intricate relationship between food and climate. Each told a story, such as through highlighting the importance of youth education, responsible soil treatment, and more which can be seen here.

Some passers-by shared common concerns about the effects of today’s food production, such as “energy waste through meat production.” Even more were eager to contribute their innovative ideas of ways to improve it, with: “more organic food markets,” “raise taxes on food with big carbon footprints,” and “seawater greenhouses.”These valuable ideas reflect the importance of making responsible food choices as consumers.

Some facts worth knowing: Livestock production alone contributes to 18% of the global warming effect – more than every single car, train, and plane worldwide*. Industrialized agriculture also accounts for the majority of the world’s freshwater use.Making healthy, sustainable food choices means being aware of the source and production process.

Find out the truths by talking directly to the farmers at your local greenmarket.

By Human Impacts Institute’s 2011 Environmental Services Intern, Melanie Sluyter

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