How much carbon could you save by going veggie or vegan every so often?
Published: 20 January 2022
In his regular feature, Denis the Dustcart talks about how much carbon could you save by going veggie or vegan every so often?
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We may be more than halfway through Veganuary, but it’s never too late to adjust your diet and reduce your carbon footprint by hundreds of KGs per year.
Uswitch (https://www.uswitch.com/gas-electricity/) has rather helpfully calculated how much CO2 people can save in a year by making small lifestyle changes.
Just occasionally substituting meat for a veggie option, or swapping out an animal product for a plant-based alternative – it all adds up to a big difference.
Check out how much carbon you could save by choosing vegetarian or vegan options over meat or fish:
- 1 vegetarian day per week (52 days a year) can save nearly 100kgs of CO2 per year.
- 1 vegetarian week per month (12 weeks a year) can save nearly 153kgs of CO2 per year.
- 1 vegan day per week (52 days a year) can save nearly 143kgs of CO2 per year.
- 1 vegan week per month (12 weeks a year) can save nearly 231kgs of CO2 per year.
Don’t eat meat or fish? You could still save tonnes by going from veggie to vegan now and again:
- 1 vegan day per week (52 days a year) can save nearly 50kgs of CO2 per year.
- 1 vegan week per month (12 weeks a year) can save nearly 80kgs of CO2 per year.
Here are some veggie/vegan ideas for the nation’s favourite dishes:
There are various vegetarian and vegan mince substitutes on the market, but you can also crumble up a good-quality vegan burger to substitute for meat in your sauce. The hard-core among you might also try lentils.
Adding Marmite to your sauce can give it that meaty flavour without animal ingredients.
- Sausage and mash
Shroom dogs are about the closest vegan sausages can get in taste and texture to meat sausages, but there are so many vegan and veggie sausage options on the shelves that you’re bound to find one you like. Try vegan butter and plant milk in your mash to ensure a creamy texture.
- Fry up
If vegan sausages and bacon aren’t up your street, try grilled halloumi. It’s not vegan, being a cheese, but it does provide a similar salty crunchy taste and texture to bacon without the meat content.
Scrambled tofu can be a good alternative for scrambled eggs.
- Sunday roast
There are hundreds of recipes for nut roasts out there, and these days you can buy some absolute winners from local health-food and farm shops.
Have you tried a mushroom wellington!
Remember the vegan gravy!
- Calculate your carbon footprint
Uswitch has also created a Carbon Offsetting Tool that will tell you for how long you would need to go vegan to offset your household carbon footprint: www.uswitch.com/car-insurance/guides/carbon-offsetting-calculator-diet
Do you have any go-to veggie or vegan alternatives?