The GoodyGood Blog

How much CO2 does my barbeque produce?

Are you serious? Do I really need to offset my BBQ? 

Summer is (almost) here in Aotearoa! Along with sunburn, sitting around in wet togs for far too long and forgetting what day of the week it is in those magical few days after Christmas, sizzling some snarlers on the old barbeque is a ubiquitous feature of a great New Zealand summer. 

At GoodyGood, we help you take care of the climate impact of things that bring you joy. 

So this summer, we've introduced a one-off product to take care of the climate impact of your summer BBQs.

‘Hullaballoo for your BBQ’ is all about celebrating what’s awesome about the summer BBQ. Friends and family getting together and enjoying each other’s company, or awkward workmates seeing their boss wearing shorts for the first time. It’s about connecting, and sharing.

You might be wondering why on Earth you’d need to offset your BBQ. Is your barbeque bad for the environment? Or maybe you’ve got deeper, nerdier questions, like what are the CO2 emissions from your barbeque, or would a gas barbeque be better than a charcoal grill when it comes to carbon pollution? 

Well, the short answer is yes, cooking food by burning fossil fuels does make carbon emissions and yes, there is a difference in emissions between a gas or charcoal BBQ, but... 

the biggest difference you can make is changing what you put on the barbeque. 

Let’s run the numbers…

When you take care of the climate impact of your summer barbeques with GoodyGood, we offset half a tonne of CO2 for you, using one of our many awesome climate projects. That covers you for a 9kg bottle of LPG and about 15kg of meat. 

The assumptions our backroom nerds have used to work this out are that using 1kg of LPG produces about 3kgs of CO2-equivalent emissions and that the average kilo of meat you’re grilling makes about 30kgs of CO2. 

That’s right, a kilo of meat can create more CO2 than a whole LPG bottle. 

So while a charcoal BBQ produces about 3 times the CO2 of a gas BBQ, if you love that smoky charcoal flavour, you don’t have to give it up to reduce the climate impact of your barbeque. Just change what you’re grilling. 

Beef has really high emissions, as does lamb, while other meats like pork and poultry have lower emissions and plant-based options are lower again. Way lower. Carbon Brief has a great summary (GoodyGoods love a good graph!) and some University of Otago academics have researched the carbon footprint of local food more closely too

Putting on delicious plant-based or vegetarian barbeque food would slash the carbon footprint of your next grill party, but if you can’t quite get your carnivorous family across the line on Vegan Lyfe, just remember these three easy peasy steps: 

Less beef and lamb
Some pork and poultry instead
Add more plants. 

Was that a haiku? We’re not sure. 

In the meantime, you can make a Hullabaloo for your BBQ (that’s GoodyGood-speak for offsetting your summer BBQs) by adding it to your climate mix here, or just start a conversation by sharing this post.  

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