With the global warming, all countries of the world are continually trying to implement various sustainable development models of low-carbon economies. Consumption, as a major factor that restricts economic development, is bound to attract more and more attention, especially carbon emissions caused by food consumption, has gradually become the focus of various departments. In recent years, with resident living quality improving, the structure of food consumption has changed, which results in carbon emissions increasing and environmental burdens, also became a serious threat to China's sustainable development.
In this paper, the direct and indirect carbon emission of 11 kinds of food were calculated and compared, in addition, using the LMDI decomposition method quantitatively calculated the contribution values of population, food consumption structure, and carbon intensity to the total amount of food carbon emissions, and further analysis the impact of China's GDP changes on carbon emission from livestock products with the EKC.The results are as follows:
(1) The direct carbon emissions from per capita food consumption of urban residents showed a fluctuating increase. The emission in 2014 was increased by 28% compared to 2000. For rural residents, before 2012, the direct carbon emissions is decline with the food consumption declined, Afterwards, as the consumption of animal foods continues to increase, direct carbon emissions continue to rise.
(2) The indirect carbon emissions of urban and rural residents' food consumption were on the rise. From the various stages of the food life cycle, food produces the minimum carbon emission and the grows more slowly in the production phase. carbon emissions in the transport phase increased most rapidly and were significantly higher than the production and consumption phases after 2008.
(3) Overall, the carbon emissions from urban and rural residents per capita food consumption are increased. 2014 increased by 43.1% and 15.2% respectively compared to 2000. Rural areas were significantly lower than urban , and the gap are constantly widening, the ratio changed from 1.05:1 in 2000 to 1.3:1 in 2014, and it continues to grow.
(4) The LMDI model was used to calculate the contribution of the population, food consumption structure, and carbon emission intensity to the carbon emissions from food consumption. The results show that: In the whole country, food consumption structure and carbon intensity have a significantly higher impact on food carbon emissions than population, and the contribution value reaches three times than population. For urban and rural residents, the most important factor is the population.
(5) Using the EKC model to explore the impact of GDP on carbon emissions from livestock products, it was found that the carbon emissions have increased with the growth of per capita GDP, and did not show a trend of decrease or slowdown.
In response to the situation of carbon emissions from food consumption in China, the following countermeasures and suggestions to reduce carbon emissions are proposed: (1) Have a balanced diet and advocate healthy consumption. and raise residents' awareness of healthy diet, encourage residents to eat more vegetables and fruits, reasonably supplement milk, and moderately reduce meat consumption to ensure balanced nutrition. (2) Rational use of pesticides and fertilizers in agricultural production. we must base on China's National Conditions to strict accordance with the requirements of “increasing production, economy, and environmental protection fertilization”, and the principle of “fineness, adjustment, reform, and replacement” to gradually correct the unreasonable use of chemical fertilizers. (3) Strengthen the management of livestock production stages and achieve reduction of livestock products. By improving the quality of livestock products, optimizing feed and dietary additives, to improve livestock product performance and further increase the meat production and slaughter rate of livestock and poultry. (4) Improve energy efficiency and actively develop and use energy-efficient transportation energy. In addition, through optimization of transportation routes and vehicle distribution solutions to reduce carbon emissions during the transportation phase. (5) optimize the energy consumption structure and actively promote low-carbon life, increase residents' awareness of energy consumption, and encourage residents to use clean energy such as biogas, wind power, and solar energy as their main energy sources.