Environmental Impacts of Eating
Professor Jodie Jenkinson
Adobe Illustrator CC
Environmental issues are increasingly on the mind of the public, especially as a growing body of evidence points to a deteriorating climate and future shortages of vital resources. But while common themes in the environmental narrative involve cars, pollution and water useage, many don't consider the impacts of one of the most resource-consuming industries that exists: Food.
Though a nutritionally balanced, calorically sufficient diet is a necessary human right, not all foods are created equal with respect to energy, water and CO2 inputs and emissions. This visual was created to compare these contributions by different types of food.
The main challenge of this project was to compile large amounts of data and present it in a compelling narrative that the audience can meaningfully understand. This was achieved by comparing abstract quantities and units and comparing them to everyday equivalents to communicate the dramatic variations. This data was summarized by taking a look at an average Canadian diet, and the differential contributions to energy use by varying food categories.