Climate Change Policy and Human Health (forum excerpt)

I am taking a course in Climate Change Policy and Human Health. I will add one-two more posts about this course, as it is very interesting to me as a landscape architect. For now, I want to share with you my first contribution to the forum.

Meat eaters and vegetarianism. Is not about the diet.

I can only support a personal action in this matter. Our bodies dictate what vitamins we need, according to the place we live in and the effort/ activities we are undertaking. Surely, there are vegetables, fruits and foods that have been imposed in the diet enough time ago that we take it as part of the culture to be available, for example tomatoes during the winter, but also everyday meat consumption. Beef production has became a regular item on the money table. Furthermore, the production and it`s subventions, give less power to small farmers that are left with no chance to global market or fair prices.

Is only after I realized I don`t like the taste of meat when I came across more information to support my vegetarianism convictions. If and when the body is asking for fish, give the body fish, and if and when body will ask for meat – give it meat, but abusing is a different discussion. Meanwhile, I personally choose healthy foods. I come from a community where the dry summers meant vegetables and fruits every day, and fat pork meat in cold winters even 3 times a week. The fact that I am now living an equatorial life allows me a vegetarian diet, but I still believe we have to balance the diet according to our bodies and the place we live in.

Now, with an eye on our personal health, and with another one measuring the GHGs emissions for providing the food supplies (production, transport, storage) will make us think twice the diet and the method of supply. Small businesses, urban agriculture, regularized rural-urban linkages will contribute a lot to a new era of healthy diets and environments.

The car owner should be taxed?

The mining and gas companies are rarely paying any taxes in the neither exploited areas nor in their country. Their products developed often with a minimum expense are being assembled, and with the waste of large amounts of water, the magic happens: brand new objects are shining into the store. Production tax: zero. Transport tax: zero.

Due to the inefficient public transport I decide I need a car. I buy the car in Romania, after the pretty ads convince me to go for the car that “suits my personality”. I pay a tax for the purchase. I register the car to the relevant local authority and I pay a tax. Every year I pay a national road tax, because I use the road. I pay the gas tax, I ‘pay the service that includes an additional tax.

I do agree that if the environmental pollution tax should be added to my bill if this doesn’t happen already. But what about the companies that import and sell the cars? The dealer has a high influence on air pollution also, but indirectly. So why not taxing them too? What about those that build the roads for the cars to run on. They too facilitate an increase in GHGs emissions and they too contribute to promoting unsustainable ways of transport.

Furthermore, while all sustainable and green societies claim themselves environmental equitable, most of the products they use are made in developing countries at the cost of their water and other natural resources and their human health. Many of those jobs affect the health of the buyer too, but nevertheless, mind the actors in between.

The car owner has an income for which he or she pays tax. Companies often don`t. Why do we put so much pressure on regular people when the main responsible is the one that facilitates personal car use? (Advertising, purchase, delivery and any other actor of car lobby)?

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