Transition @ PIK

Lifestyles - identification and quantification

The environmental impact of an human on earth is mediated by two factors; lifestyle and technological development. Any sustainable transition will probably require changes in both. In our work we attempt to quantify the temporal evolution of several lifestyle dimensions (e.g., diets, consumption) and evaluate the associated environmental consequences.

Dietary habits and food waste

Using past data from authoritative sources like FAO and a clustering routine, we identified the occurrence of changes in global dietary patterns has occurred during the last 50 years (Pradhan et al. 2013). In addition, future dietary changes have been estimated and future food demand quantified (Pradhan et al. 2013, Pradhan et al. 2013a).

A solution to meet the increasing food demand is to reduce food loss and waste. We determined country scale food availability and requirement ratio as a function of Human Development Index (HDI) for the year 2010. The ratio below 1 represents food deficit. The country populations in billion (bn) and million (mn) are depicted by the diameter of the bubbles (Hiç et al. 2016).

Local vs Global

Community-based initiatives (CBIs) can play a complementary role to top-down policies in guiding Europe towards a low-carbon future. We compare the difference in emission between CBI activities with a baseline scenario, for example the activity “Growing organic food” below.

If 5% of European citizens engaged as beneficiaries of CBIs similar to the ones sampled, almost 85% of the EU-28 countries would meet the target of reducing GHG emissions by 20% by 2020 considering the food/agriculture, waste, energy and transport domains (Potential of Community-based Sustainability Initiatives to Mitigate Climate Change, 2016).