Artist Ling Tan, designed a participatory project that combined data science, digital technology, cooking, and food to enable Chinese communities living in and around Chinatown, London to make sense of issues surrounding climate change through their food culture, cooking, and eating habits. 

As cooking is such a  participatory and communal activity that everyone, especially Chinese families enjoy, Ling thought this was a good way into the sometimes difficult conversation surrounding climate change, by tying this with exploring the carbon footprint incurred through our cooking and food. 

Over a period of 3 weeks during the COVID pandemic,  a group of Chinese participants aged 20-70 experimented with cooking low carbon versions of two traditional Chinese dishes chosen by themselves – Mapo Tofu and Braised Pork Belly.

The project is part digital part physical. Using a custom digital platform, each participant documented their own cooking process at home, capturing information relating to ingredient types, source of ingredients, and cooking methods. Data relating to the carbon footprint incurred through different phases of the cooking process were also shown to encourage participants to think of inventive ways to reduce their meal’s carbon footprint. The user-friendly digital platform enabled participants to share their experience with each other throughout the experimentation phase.


You can see more on the project here and visit the project website  to learn about the impact of our food on the climate and experiment with creating your own low carbon recipes 

Climate Exploration Cookbook was part of Season for Change, a UK-wide cultural programme inspiring urgent and inclusive action on climate change.

Season for Change showcases the creativity and leadership of the UK’s cultural sector on the most important issue of our time – the climate crisis – through 15 artistic commissions and an open programme where artists and arts organisations declare their commitment to the environment and aim to inspire urgent,  inclusive action on climate change.

Season for Change is led by Artsadmin and Julie’s Bicycle, delivered in collaboration with partners nationwide and supported by Arts Council England and Paul Hamlyn Foundation. With support from the Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity (CUSP

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