Speculative Design for Ecological Literacy: Envisioning a Food Carbon Emissions Labeling System
Buck, Angeline Ruth
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This thesis identifies one of the most significant causes of carbon emissions (CO2e) which is the production and transportation of animal products from producers to consumers. To envision a speculative ecological future and design, or, an alternative present as Speculative Design advocates, this thesis references environmental policy processes for the implementation of a new unit of measure, the CO2e gram. Canadian food laws can be influenced by a third-party actor, such as a non-governmental organization, that will significantly aid in influencing consumers. To implement the carbon labeling system, this thesis references the organic and non-gmo labels, as well as the Rainforest Alliance certified seal of approval by the Forest Stewardship Council and their applications. Through a series of Speculative Design works for a carbon label system, this thesis argues that the projects within the system will provoke consumer awareness, enabling the public to think, question and adopt a low-carbon lifestyle. This movement will pressure the Canadian government to implement a new policy that requires food packaging to include the CO2e label, indicating that a product is low-carbon. This new policy will influence consumer behaviour, transitioning the public towards to a more sustainable lifestyle, through their eating choices, that will contribute to attaining a sustainable, post-carbon future.