42 Gallons Of Water To Make One Slice Of Pizza, And Other Facts We Need To Know
Published: 4 Feb 2014
News flash: It takes almost 42 gallons of water to make one single slice of pizza - 18 for the flour, 21 for the cheese and 2.5 for the sauce. And a pound of chocolate? A whopping 3170 gallons.
A new guide, "Meet The Nexus: How Food, Water and Energy are Connected" by the GRACE Communications Foundation aims to help consumers better connect the dots to create a more sustainable world by linking the impact of the water, energy and foods we consume.
Of course, for those of us living in drought-stricken California, the importance of water and it's connection to food, is not lost. With less than 6 inches of precipitation in 2013 in San Francisco and day after day of sunshine around the state, farmers and consumers alike are praying for rain.
But the drought's connection to the energy we use is less easily seen by the untrained eye.
"Even in a good water year, California's water system uses 20% of the state's electricity to get that water to farms, cities and towns," says Peter J. Hanlon, a Senior Research and Policy Analyst for GRACE Communications Foundation. Drought impacts lakes too, like Lake Mead, now in danger of leaving hydroelectric turbines at Hoover Dam high and dry, unable to produce power for its 1.3 million consumers.
Another example of nexus thinking can be found when talking about food waste. Not only does throwing out our leftovers mean we toss 40 percent of our food into the trash in the U.S., it also means we waste 1/4 of all the water consumed in the country. Throwing out food also results in lost energy originally put into fertilizing, storing and transporting that food.
The guide outlines ways consumers can positively impact the food, water, energy nexus.
Reduce your food waste - buy less (and freeze extras). Learn more about "best by," "use by" and "sell by" dates - most do not indicate that food has gone "bad" or dangerous.
Find out about how the farms you buy from save energy and water and reward their efforts by purchasing from them directly.
Stop buying bottled water - the amount of fuel used to produce plastic bottles (even if you then recycle them) is enormous.
Quit buying stuff - every unnecessary item you purchase diverts valuable energy and water resources and often just ends up in the trash.
Think tanks, companies and universities have been discussing the linkages between food, water and energy for years, and the World Economic Forum in January focused on the "nexus" as a major area of concern for 2014. The GRACE guide, however, is perhaps the first to attempt to bring consumers into the conversation, relating the complexity of the nexus to everyday activities and meals.
Courtesy of Forbes.com http://onforb.es/1inXmwu