3 Day 4 - No Impact Experiment

Are you sitting down? You should...I will wait while you do. Okay...cereal is bad for the environment. CEREAL! We eat a lot of cereal around here as it is the snack of choice (and before B sometimes the dinner of choice). I knew that some cereal were worse than others and that there was GMO's in some of them. But I was shocked when I entered my numbers into the 'foodprint' tool and saw just how bad it is.

First a bit of background. The units of measure are carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) emission of greenhouse gases. 1 point = 0.035 oz of CO2e. Studies indicate that 4500 CO2e points would be a 'high carbon' diet and is the equivalent of 3 tons of CO2e a year...or 3 round trip 3 hour flights. Wowza.

Okay so what are the heavy hitters?  Meat and dairy are the highest...heck a 6oz steak (6oz) is 7189 CO2e! This is because the animals are naturally emitting methane.

What does all of this mean for us? We really try to eat local and organic. Neither of which can really be factored in when calculating your 'foodprint' so we get no credit for that in this game. What helps keep our numbers down is meat...or lack there of. No we are not veggies but we don't eat meat at every meal. And if we do eat meat 90% of the time it is local and 50% of the time it is organic, free range, antibiotic/hormone free. So I don't feel bad about eating meat.

My CO2e points for Tuesday were 2175 and today it was 1572. In actual CO2e that means yesterday my eating habits created 76.13oz  and today 55.02oz of greenhouse gas emissions. If we take those as an average that would mean over a course of a year I will have created 0.66 tons of greenhouse emissions.

I found today to be very eye opening. I also found it to be very tough because I love food and am a total snacker. I don't really eat lunch or breakfast I just eat small things all day long. So I eat a lot of yogurt, fruit and vegetables. In the summer it is way easier to eat locally but in the winter it is hard..actually it is virtually impossible unless I can/freeze/pickle summer produce.

Day 1: Consumption Update - Nothing purchased today.
Day 2: Trash Update - 3 diapers, 3 wipes, 1 cereal bar wrapper, 1 piece of plastic wrap
Day 3: Transportation Update - Drove to and from work (with daycare drop off and pickup) ~ 30km

Food Updates
Day 5: 1976 CO2e mainly from carrots and potatoes.
Day 6: 1680 CO2e
Day 7: 3117 CO2e - salmon and cereal in the same was not a good idea I guess
Day 8: 2030 CO2e

Related Posts - Check them Out
Say hello to our little garden
This is why you build a garden
No Impact Experiment


  1. Cereal? Really? Oh No. We eat a lot of cereal too.

    Fellow Blog Hopper:)

  2. Hi Jen, reading your blog after 'meeting' you during eco Wednesday. Great to see your No Impact challenge. We've reduced our waste to about 1/3 a kitchen bag each week, with the composters in this area now.

    If interested, I have instructions on making your own wipes on my site. We also used cloth diapers, but used a diaper service, then used their cloth wipes. Just an idea.

  3. Hey Michelle: We used to use a local service until it gave B a major rash and it just would not go away. Then there was some ridiculousness on their part with ripping us off...yadda yadda yadda, we are going to buy some CD's this time.