Towards the full cost of diets: valuing and attributing food system externalities to improve decision-making for human and planetary health
Year of award: 2022
Dr Marco Springmann
University of Cambridge
The health and environmental challenges posed by unhealthy and unsustainable diets, and the food system underpinning those, have emerged as key public and planetary health concerns. Whilst there is broad consensus on the long-term need for dietary and food-system change, adequate policy responses are lacking. My aim is to improve decision-making for human and planetary health by addressing two major obstacles: the lack of consistent attribution of food-related health and environmental impacts to dietary changes, and the lack of representing those impacts in the comparable monetary terms that are relevant for policy appraisals and decision-making. My key goals are to: - Estimate and attribute the health and environmental impacts of dietary changes at scales relevant for decision-making. - Estimate the monetary and economic value of the health and environmental impacts of dietary changes. - Co-create and analyse policy options for integrating the health and environmental impacts of dietary changes into decision-making. In my methodological approach, I will follow a systems perspective and extend and link health, environmental, and economic models. The focus in the first five years will be the health impacts of climate change and air pollution that are linked to diets, and the impacts diets have on biodiversity and ecosystem services.