Cookies and climate change

Sunday afternoon.  Surprisingly, it is raining outside, as it has been the last three days.  It is a welcomed event, considering how dry our Junes usually are.  With the fire season ahead, I welcome any rainy day.  With the windows open because I love the smell and sound of rain, I decided there was no better time to make cookies.  Chocolate chip oat cookies.  I haven’t baked anything in about two months – kind of unlike me.

The cookies are finished and I dig in.  I take a photo, because apparently that is what we do nowadays.  I wanted to share it to my IG, but then I thought… my page is focused on nature, zero waste, and sustainability – what place do chocolate chip oat cookies have on my page, regardless of how delicious they are?  I could spin it as homemade and package-free – sure.  I could focus on the bulk ingredients, again avoiding plastic and packaging – great.  But then I had another idea entirely.

I follow climatestrikecanada, and their post popped into my eyes as I opened IG.  It was a quote from someone on Twitter, a reminder of the 12 years we have to save the planet, but with a wink of humour in it.  This reminded me of my last post, in which I discussed that every choice and action we make has an impact on someone or something else.  I began questioning everything about my homemade chocolate chip oat cookie.

Yes, there are a few great things about this cookie: it is delicious, comforting, and I knew every ingredient that went into it, as well as avoiding packaging from store-bought cookies.  However, what about the deeper picture?  The picture we rarely view because, after all, it is just a cookie.

Sugar, brown sugar, butter, eggs, maple syrup, cinnamon, salt, flour, baking soda, chocolate chips, oats.  Those are the ingredients.  But what do I even know about these ingredients?  What do I know about their origin?  Their harvesting?  The hands that planted and maintained?  The land that was used, the water, and other resources.  How far did these ingredients travel to get to me?  How many different modes of transportation?  How many legitimate factories, growers, or producers?

I know nothing of the sugar industry.  I used regular sugar from a bulk bin.  The butter I used may be Canadian, but that is the end of my knowledge.  I know nothing of the maple syrup industry, only that it is harvested from trees; and then?  I know nothing about how cinnamon is grown, how salt is harvested, or where my bulk-bin flour or baking soda came from; I use the latter to clean my sink?  I know the cacao industry is known to be cruel, so what of the chocolate chips I used; they weren’t organic – just your regular old chocolate chip.  The oats?  Where did they come from?  How heavily polluted is the soil in which they grew?

The only thing I know is that the eggs I bought are from happy chickens and responsible farmers in Creston, BC.  That’s it.

So, what of the impact of my tiny little chocolate chip oat cookie?

I need to go lie down.

In love and compost,


A treat – or perhaps not?

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