Expect the unexpected

One month and no posts. What is happening, right? I actually thought you would be flooding KTH’s mail box with your concerns of what had happened to me and why I was not posting anymore 🙁 … still waiting for those mails to arrive my dear readers; nonetheless, while I wait, I do have a surprise for you!

Unfortunately I can’t say more but just that hold still and fear not! We are all working extra hours, night shifts, and even holidays (jokes on this, c’mon it’s Sweden) for you to have the best of experiences when reading about this amazing institution and incredible country.

Stay tuned!

Reusable Food Containers

Restaurants working with customers for sustainable development and food consumption? Doesn’t sound that crazy! Well, the past week a little bird told me about this amazing idea that our friends from ReTak had about working altogether to decrease the amount of containers (mainly styrofoam) used in the food industry. How? Based on an app, customers and restaurants that offer efficient solutions as these reusable containers, will be connected and will interact with a third party (supplier) in charge of delivering clean containers to the restaurants and receiving the used ones from the customers.

Do you feel keen about knowing more about this idea? Well, during the Smaka på Stockholm or a “taste of Stockholm” festival taking place in Küngsträdgården 5 – 10 June 11 am-10 pm , you will be able to test this in real life, and will be handed out food samples in the recyclable boxes for trial!… is free entry! Remember that is vital that we decrease our consumption in these type of non-biodegradable materials such as styrofoam, based on the fact that by 2050 it is estimated that there will be more plastic in the oceans than fishes 🙁

Want to be an active member of this idea? ReTak will love to have volunteers to help them during the food festival with some ideas about the design and implementation of how the booth is going to look like. If you would like to take part with them, contact me! 😀

 

Veggies Everywhere

Vegetarian, vegan, meat-based… so many different adjectives to classify our diets, but are these diets easy to follow here in Sweden? Well, let me tell you they actually are easy to follow and how much you are concerned in their different environmental impacts!

According to this graph, you can see how much environmental impact your type of diet has. Meat has not only health related problems, but also environmental ones. In Sweden, more particularly in Stockholm, I’ve encountered infinite options for plant-based diets; nevertheless, it has been estimated that around 10 % of the Swedish population has a 100 % meat-free diet. With projections saying that by 2050 humanity will reach 9 billion people, eating meat puts lots of pressure to our environment.

Don’t misjudge my opinion towards meat, I love its flavour, I grew up eating it, but the fact that it has a huge environmental impact makes it harder for me to just do nothing and enjoy eating a steak. As far as I know, we should all (humans and other species) be able to enjoy a sustainable environment. I don’t consider myself vegetarian (less vegan), but I do have a beef/lamb-free diet and I do eat fish and chicken. Pork has never been so appealing to me if I have to confess. The problems with beef and lamb are,

  • Beef requires a huge quantity of space. Estimations are about 28 times what pork and chicken need… remember that land is also home of other species, like trees; trees that absorbe CO2
  • Beef produces 11 times more greenhouse gases than potatoes, wheat, and rice.
  • Beef livestock produces an estimated 2.9 gigatonnes of CO2-eq (40% of all livestock emissions)
  • Livestock produce… hold on to your seat… 15 % of the total anthropogenic GHG emissions!!!
  • 15,000 L of water used per kg of beef meat! Don’t believe me? Check this link
  • Eating a kilo of lamb produces emissions equivalent to driving about 150 km… and no, it’s not a Tesla what you are driving while eating it.

and the list could go on and on… but well, here in Sweden we find these kind of corners in the supermarkets “vego för alla” or veggie for everyone, where you’ll be able to choose between vegetarian “meatballs” or vegetarian chorizo!

And it doesn’t stop there… look what you find as ads in the metro stations…

So would you like to help me saving the Earth “one taco at a time”? Try decreasing the beef and lamb you tend to eat to almost zero! Trust me it’s not difficult! This planet is also yours and you are as responsible as me of taking care of its resources. Let’s do it together! 😀

How Fast How Clean

Choo choo! All aboard! Today’s topic is about transportation and more specifically Swedish trains. Despite the complains from some locals about the “quality” and sometimes “delayed” trains (like couple of minutes delayed trains…) I have found the Swedish transportation amazing. Let’s remember that I come from Mexico where there is only 1 (yes one) train in the North of the country and where public transportation looks like (yes, this is a public bus in Mexico City)…

Sweden is a country that has more than 50% of its territory cover by forest, has a “tax relief” since 2005 for the power-intensive industries in order for them to change to renewable and decrease their energy consumption, and more than 50 % of the total energy demand comes from renewables. When it comes to electricity, Sweden manages to use less than 1 % of fossil fuels… but why is this important? Well, SJ (Swedish train company) claims that the entire Swedish train system runs on RENEWABLES!

 SJ trains only buy renewable electricity from hydroelectric and wind-powered sources, the trains cause minimal emissions.

But that’s not the only thing they manage to do right… you want to dispose some garbage? Well, you better know how to separate!

What do you think about Swedish transportation? Awesome right? So far it seems that they are doing everything that is possible to maintain their environmental impact at its lowest! So how is it in your country? Don’t forget to subscribe or comment!

Seasonal Food

Hey peeps, sorry for taken a bit to write, but I just came back from an incredible trip to Mexico (if you are new here, I’m Mexican)! The trip was more than amazing cause I had the chance to enjoy my family and friends after 9 months of living abroad… family, friends, and FOOD! Just as a “fyi”, Mexican cuisine is considered “cultural heritage” by UNESCO (it’s super tasty… sometimes super spicy too haha).

While in Mexico, a cool topic came to my mind… “seasonal food”. The definition of this type of food varies from authors. For example, some described it as food not only grown in a determined region, but food produced in its “natural growing season”; some even understand the meaning as food that is eaten at a certain time of the year (e.g. Christmas). Nevertheless, I do want to think that the ultimate “sustainable seasonal food” is the one locally produced, locally consumed, grown during its “natural” time of the year, and of course with a low use of fertilizers.

Ok, now I do have to admit that is kind of hard (at least for me) to know when is the “correct” season for each fruit or vegetable that I buy; nevertheless, I learnt that knowing this is actually important not only for my economy, but for the planet too. For example, as a direct impact of eating seasonal food is that you’ll be saving some [insert any currency] each time you go to the supermarket. This is based on the increased work load that an off-season product will take in order to make it grow (this by means of many factors).

To understand how this could be evaluated at an environmental level, we have to understand the tool that is used to measure a product’s impact: life cycle assessment (LCA). This tool is a technique that evaluates a product’s supply chain; in the case of food, we are talking about the environmental impacts of farming activities, packaging, transportation, and waste (just to name some). So how eating seasonal food helps the planet? Buying seasonal food could mean

  • Supporting local suppliers.. common! Let’s boost local economies!
  • Decreasing transportation greenhouse gases emissions… still waiting for Musk’s e-trucks haha
  • Decreasing the use of chemicals (hence land/water pollution)… do I need to talk about eutrophication?
  • Eating fresher products… (fruit taste better in Mexico haha)

Yeah, that was me in Mexico posing with a Jackfruit haha… but going back to the topic, next time you think about eating strawberries in February, think twice and don’t forget to look after your planet! Click here for a seasonal fruit table! 😀 

 

 

 

 

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