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I'm convinced that buying locally is the best answer

I recently heard about California's new regulations on methane produced by dairy cows (related articles here). But, come on, can this really be enough to reduce carbon emissions to make a considerable difference? I think there's a simpler solution, which doesn't involve the government, nor requires any regulations or tax burdens of any kind. People just need to exercise some discipline and self control and just make the bulk of their meals from locally produced foods.

From what I understand of the matter, these new regulations on dairy farmers will make it more difficult for small producers to compete with larger corporate milk producers, ultimately putting them out of business. This is what happens in most cases, when regulations like these are put into place. And, I don't see how this will make any significant impact on global carbon emissions.

Rather than relying on government and their corporate stooges to address these issues, if "man made climate change" really is a problem for someone, they should take action themselves. Individuals, taking action in unison with other like-minded people, can be more effective than any legislation; and it would be done so in a fair way.

Just think how much less carbon emissions would be if we, as a society, would just make the bulk of our meals from locally grown and produced foods.

A couple of days ago, Janice and I were away from home for the afternoon and decided to get a quick bite to eat a nearby fast food restaurant. While we were waiting to place our order, the woman ahead of us was quite upset that she could not get a fresh salad that day. Apparently, the restaurant didn't have the necessary ingredients.

This got me thinking: what if more people only ate locally produced food? Not having a garden fresh salad at this time of year (this being central Canada in December) would be expected. Rather than a garden fresh salad, restaurants would most likely have preserved foods on the menu, unless hot-house vegetables were available.

Remember the days when a mandarin orange was a very special Christmas treat? They were only shipped in that one time of the year, rather than all year long, like they are today.

I wondered if this woman in front of us was a person who supported government regulations on producers, like diary farmers, to help curb carbon emissions. Then I wondered if she would also sacrifice the year round availability of garden vegetables for the good of the planet? I wonder how many other people would be willing to give up the year round availability of fresh produce, imported from warmer climates, at the grocery store for the "good of the planet"?

We (Janice and I) are not perfect people. But, we are quite content to reduce our dependency on produce from markets outside of our area. During the summer, we enjoy fresh produce from our own garden, as well as what we find at the local farmer's market. We're also quite content to a winter of potatoes from the root celar and what vegetables we were able to dehydrate during the summer and autumn months. And if we can't get a garden salad at a restaurant until next spring, then so be it. A small price to pay, I say, to keep the government out of the pockets of small food producers (if that were the case).


(Reposted from my ipernity blog)


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Alan on :

Firstly and unrelated to your post, I just realised that I hadn't seen a blogpost from you for a while (I subscribed using rss, and it's obviously stopped updating), so apologies for not reading your blog for a while. I'll update the rss or make sure I check more regularly.

Secondly - I think you already know my thoughts on this anyway, but I think locally grown or even home grown is the best. Yes it does mean that there are certain things that you can only have at certain times of the year, and some not at all or only as the occasional "treat", but I think it's something that is not only an environmental good, but is also important for supporting local businesses, and community.

I am a little wary of things that although they are grown locally, are still out of season and grown in heated greenhouses or similar, unless there are heated using a renewable fuel source e.g. solar, but that doesn't seem to be much of a problem at this point in time, and most local produce seems to stick to the seasonal varieties, at least around here anyway.

Like you we are not perfect either, but I think generally people have forgotten the methods of storing and preservation, and growing seasonal crops.

As you know this is a topic close to my heart, and something I am looking to do more of.

David on :

Hi, Alan.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment. Not sure why the RSS feed failed; probably something I did on this end. Sorry about that.

I hold your opinion on this subject in high regard, as I do know it's something in which you're intimately involved - not to say I don't hold your opinion on other subjects any differently :-)

I think if more people would think along these lines, we wouldn't need so much regulation and "big brother" involvement in our affairs. But, I think I'm preaching to the choir here.


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