What to drink during the heatwave while thinking about the planet?
Alamy images with The HuffPost
Avoid alcohol, coffee and sodas and favor homemade flavored drinks to refresh yourself and be green at the same time.
HOT WEATHER – Drink between 1.5L and 2.5L of water per day. You know this recommendation by heart, but given the extreme heat sweeping France this Wednesday, August 3, it is stronger than ever. Water has a second advantage: It is by far the greenest drink.
Only for an aperitif with friends or a snack with family do we want a hotter drink… and one that respects the environment. The HuffPost gives you the map of the worst drinks on the planet and gives you THE greenest drink.
- Beer is better than wine
You can forget about alcohol. For health reasons, alcohol should be consumed in moderation and is not hydrating in times of high heat. And for the health of the planet, we cannot say that alcohol is virtuous. But if you have to decide, 1 liter of beer produces 1.5kg of CO2 versus 6kg of CO2 for wine or whiskey, according to figures from a 2010 Danish study. So beer has a four times lower carbon footprint per liter than wine and strong alcohols.
What is expensive in the carbon footprint of wine and these alcohols is transportation. Many are imported. But also the packaging. Although glass is easy to recycle, alcohol bottle glass is very thick and heavy, which emits a lot of CO2 in its manufacture. To be more environmentally friendly, you can buy your alcohol in cubi of several litres. This cardboard container is lighter than traditional glass bottles and can be stored in the fridge for several weeks.
Also, don’t forget the astronomical amount of water required to produce alcohol. According to the organization water footprint network, a single glass of wine requires the consumption of 109 liters of water. As for beer, half a pint uses up…75L of water. This water called “Virtual” is the one related to the production of alcohol (irrigating the vines, pressing and fermenting the grapes, brewing beer, etc.).
- Don’t add milk to your coffee
We think about it less in the summer, but coffee is still widely consumed by the French. Well, it’s no big deal… Between deforestation and importation from the tropical regions where it’s grown, coffee has a serious environmental impact. If you really can’t live without it, at least avoid adding milk. This is the result of a report by British researchers published in the specialist media The conversation, milk accounts for about two-thirds of coffee’s total carbon footprint. In fact, the milk comes from cows, which emit a lot of methane, a gas that warms the atmosphere. It’s better with plant milk.
- Not all teas are the same
Same advice, if you’re more of the tea team, don’t do it like the English do: don’t add milk to your cup. Especially since tea also leaves a considerable ecological footprint and therefore no longer needs to be added. A magazine survey 60 million consumers The study, published in February 2022, shows that our tea and herbal tea bags, mainly grown in India and China, are regularly sprayed with insecticides to increase yields. The worst students are green teas and glyphosate (a heavily criticized pesticide whose European approval expires on December 15, 2022, Editor’s note), was found in some black and green tea bags. Only organic infusions are guaranteed “zero pesticides,” the study specifies.
- Water-intensive lemonades
Also avoid sodas. These drinks are very water-intensive: an average of 5 liters of water are required to produce 1 liter of soda. Several journalistic investigations show that the factories of the Coca group are drying up the poor countries in which they are based. Director Julie Delettre recounts the depletion of groundwater resources in the Chiapas region of Mexico in a 2016 film: “They got approval from the National Water Commission to pump 500 million liters of water a year! This dries up the surrounding villages, those who are connected to the grid no longer have anything at the tap and those who are used to living on water from wells see them emptying more and more, “she denounces to the Public Senate.
- Juices are all about the fruit…
No alcohol, no coffee, no soda, so what do we drink? Very fresh juices and smoothies but not with any kind of fruit… You should know that fruit and veg make up 44% of air travel Food. The most imported fruits are bananas and citrus fruits, followed by melons and strawberries. That’s why we avoid these fruits that have traveled, preferring them local and seasonal.
For example, in summer you can make a smoothie with apples, pears and some strawberries if they grow near you. Ditto for homemade lemonade if you live in a region around the Mediterranean basin where lemon trees in gardens do well to acclimate. Also, favor organic fruits and vegetables to encourage more sustainable agriculture and limit pesticide residues on your fruit. Drinks made from local fruits, seasonal, preferably organic, it’s rather green, but there are even better things for the planet…
- Homemade herbal teas: THE eco-friendly recipe
Here’s the easiest, cheapest, and most eco-friendly trick to spoiling the taste of water: Add fruit to the bottom of your carafe. Put some carrot strips and apple slices in a bottle with some mint, pour in water and chill. One to two hours later: Your water is flavored. And the recipe even works with a simple slice of cucumber. For the planet, the best recipes are often the little homemade tricks!
See also on The HuffPost: Heatwave or Heatwave, How to Tell the Difference?