EPA Says Tackling Food Waste is Key to Climate Goals

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently released a report on food waste.  It is the federal government’s first formal attempt to quantify food waste and the emissions it creates. The problem is enormous with about 35 percent of the United States food supply going to waste. Even before it reaches a landfill, that waste results in greenhouse emissions equal to 42 coal-fired power plants. This number does not include the methane emissions created when the waste decomposes in a landfill. A second report due to be released this spring will tackle that part of the emissions chain. Food rescue is also a topic embedded within foods waste, and prevention is key.  One idea is for government agencies to standardize sell-by dates so that consumers don’t throw out food that could be safe to eat. Last year several bills were introduced to reduce food waste in schools and make food donation easier. According to the EPA report, the US wastes around 30% more food than other any other high-income country.

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Picture Credit Susanne Kuehne

Posted on 19 January 2022