Research press release


Communications Earth & Environment

Sustainability: Swapping meat for seafood could improve nutrition and reduce emissions

持続可能な海産物は、温室効果ガス排出量を削減しつつ、牛肉、豚肉、鶏肉よりも多くの栄養をもたらすことを報告する論文が、Communications Earth & Environment に掲載される。この知見は、海産物の食事を他の動物性タンパク質の代わりにとることを奨励する政策が将来の食料安全保障を改善し、気候変動への対処に役立つことを示唆している。


今回、Peter Tyedmers、Elinor Hallströmたちは、2015年の時点で、さまざまな漁場と養殖場に由来する世界的に重要な天然海産物と養殖海産物の栄養素密度と気候への影響を分析した。その結果、天然のサケ、ニシン、サバ、カタクチイワシだけでなく、養殖のイガイやカキが、栄養価の高さの割に気候への影響が最も少ないことが分かった。分析対象の海産物品種の半数は、牛肉、豚肉、鶏肉よりも栄養素密度が高く、温室効果ガス排出量も少なかった。また、生産方法と収穫方法の違いによって、それぞれの種の気候への影響が大きく変動することも分かった。温室効果ガス排出量をさらに削減するためには、漁業において燃料効率の良い漁業技術を採用し、枯渇した資源を再構築すべきであり、その一方で、養殖業においては、餌の消費量の少ない魚介類を増産し、もっと気候に優しい魚飼料の供給源を見つけるべきだという考えをTyedmersたちは示している。


Sustainable seafood could provide more nutrition to people than beef, pork and chicken, whilst reducing greenhouse gas emissions, reports an article published online in Communications Earth & Environment. The findings suggest that policies to promote seafood in diets as a substitute for other animal protein could improve future food security and help address climate change.

Human diets around the world need to become more nutritious, whilst reducing their climate footprint, to keep up with growing population sizes. Seafood is known to be a good source of protein, fatty acids, vitamins and minerals, and previous research has demonstrated the potential environmental benefits of replacing meat with seafood in diets. However, strategies to reduce climate emissions of future diets typically promote plant-based “green” diets, and overlook the potential of seafood-based “blue” diets.

Peter Tyedmers, Elinor Hallström and colleagues analysed the nutrient density and climate impacts of globally important wild-caught and farmed sources of seafood from a broad range of fishery and aquaculture sources in 2015. They found that wild-caught salmon, herring, mackerel, and anchovies, as well as farmed mussels and oysters, had the lowest climate impacts relative to their nutritional value. Half of the seafood species analysed had a higher nutrient density, and emitted fewer greenhouse gases than beef, pork and chicken. Differences in production and harvesting methods were found to create a large variability in the climate impacts of each species. To further reduce emissions, the fishing industry should adopt fuel-efficient fishing technologies and rebuild depleted stocks while aquaculture produces more unfed fish and shellfish and finds more climate-friendly sources of fish feed, the authors suggest.

While this research focuses on greenhouse emissions, and not the potential impacts on ecosystems, the findings highlight the possibility for seafood to provide a sustainable source of nutritious food that benefits the climate. The authors suggest that policies to help tackle climate change and poor diet should promote sustainable seafood consumption.

doi: 10.1038/s43247-022-00516-4


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