Food Security and Sustainability

There’s an absolutely brilliant lecture online by my grad school classmate Jon Foley about global food security. (You can skip the first 14 minutes of introductory material.)

Jon thinks there is hope. But he also thinks there are problems. And what’s most important, he does the numbers, and doesn’t always reach the conclusions you expect. For example, he explains that a latte is 300 times worse than a plastic bottle of water, in terms of water security.

Starting with humanity and then proceeding through reason. This is the type of thinking we need. Please watch it.


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  2. This is good.

    But a big part of me watches this and can hear, at least as clearly, the voices who will scoff and denigrate, the voices who will suck away any of the energisation that this talk should engender. Can we proof against these? Moderate them out of our lives?

    On the substance of the talk, a point which doesn't quite mesh with my instincts is his argument that if we want to deal with climate change where we should be looking at is deforestation, almost to the point of excluding all other considerations. Now I knew deforestation was important but I still have that underlying feeling that burning off carbon which has been sequestered over millions of years will have a more fundamental impact. How wrong are my instincts here?

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