LCA4Climate Research


LCA4Climate takes part in the SETAC Europe Annual Meeting

  • 05/05/2020
  • 1 min reading time
LCA4Climate takes part in the SETAC Europe Annual Meeting
Photo: SETAC Europe Annual Meeting

The UNESCO Chair in Life Cycle and Climate Change ESCI-UPF participates in the SETAC Europe 30th Annual Meeting co-chairing a session about sustainable diets and presenting a new approach on how to compare the impacts of diets based on the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) method.

This 5-day virtual event organised by the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (SETAC) features a variety of training, networking, and learning opportunities regarding emerging research, regulatory developments, and the latest methodologies in environmental toxicology and chemistry. From May 3 to 7, a large number of scientists, including the UNESCO Chair ESCI-UPF researchers, assessors, regulators, and managers from academia, business, and government, from around the world, are joining this unique networking opportunity for cross-collaboration.

To facilitate overarching discussions between participants, moderated interactive sessions are taking place throughout the week. Amongst participants, on Wednesday 6 May, from 17:00-17:30 (UTC), the researcher at the UNESCO Chair ESCI-UPF and leader of the Waste Management research line Alba Bala will be co-chairing a SETAC session about sustainable dietary patterns. “Human diets are more than the sum of individual foodstuffs since they are complex combinations of different food ingredients, influenced by cultural and socio-economic preferences. Therefore, the contribution from an individual diet or dietary choice to its environmental footprint considerably depends on the consumers’ choices: on what and how much they eat. Accordingly, diet links environmental and human health”, says Alba Bala. That is why changes in dietary choices can lead not only to improve health but also to increase the environmental sustainability of the global food system.

Therefore, this SETAC session is aimed at facing the significant role of food choices and eating patterns and finding new ways to provide the population with healthy diets from sustainable food systems, such as analysing its impacts by applying the Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) method—a systematic analysis of the environmental impact of products or systems during their entire life cycle—. In this spirit, Alba Bala is going to present the outcomes of the research led by Laura Batlle-Bayer, leader of the Agrifood research line at the UNESCO Chair ESCI-UPF, that allows comparing the environmental impacts of diets within the Spanish context, independently of their caloric and nutritional content. This study aims to set a framework for future diet-related LCA studies quantifying all relevant emissions and resources consumed and the related environmental impacts associated with diets to be able to design sustainable diets. And this is exactly the objective of the SETAC session co-chaired by Bala, which the UNESCO Chair ESCI-UPF boosts with its research.

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