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Men have a bigger carbon footprint than women, thanks to their appetite for cars and meat

A study from Sweden, carried out by research company Ecoloop and published on Monday in the Journal for Industrial Ecology, looked at single men and women living in Sweden and considered their consumption and expenditure on goods such as food, household items, furnishings, holidays and fuel for cars.

Gender stereotypes are alive and well and harming our planet, the study shows, as men’s passion for meat and cars is making them bigger contributors to greenhouse gases than women.

It found that Swedish men on average were responsible for 16% more greenhouse gases than women, despite the fact that men only spend 2% more on goods in total than women do. The research was based on official consumer spending figures from 2012 — the most recent data available.

The study gave a number of reasons why men are responsible for higher carbon emissions despite spending a similar amount to women.

It said women tended to spend money on “low-emitting products,” such as healthcare, furnishings and clothes, while men spent 70% of their money on what the study called “greenhouse gas-intensive items,” including fuel for cars.

When it comes to transportation and vacations, single men produce more emissions than women because of their higher car use — while the study also found that car-based holidays in Sweden are six times more polluting than ones taken by train.

Annika Carlsson-Kanyama, the lead researcher on the study, said that men “could really learn from women’s expenditure habits, which produce significantly less carbon emissions despite the similar amount of spending.”

She said governments need to factor these gender differences into their decision-making when shaping environmental policy.

“Policies — for example, in transportation — should be targeted to men to discourage them from spending so much on fuel, from using cars so much. It’s essential for governments, in their messaging, to explain to men how high the emissions are that their expenditure is causing.”

Carlsson-Kanyama also said she’s noticed that it “makes people uncomfortable to discuss the fact that men and women affect the environment differently.”

Asmae Ourkiya, a doctoral researcher in ecofeminism and environmental justice at the University of Limerick in Ireland, echoed Carlsson-Kanyama’s point about the impact that fixed gender roles — within which men are more likely to spend their money on cars and fuel and to eat more meat, for example — have on the environment.

Men’s “masculine identities became heavily associated with fossil fuel extraction and consumption … and resistance to sustainable diets,” they added

The study’s publication comes just weeks after the devastating consequences of climate change were laid bare across the US and Canada, when record-breaking heat waves left many dead. And the EU last week announced its bold new plan for climate action — the “Fit for 55” initiative that aims to wean its members off of fossil fuels.

Ourkiya and Carlsson-Kanyama said world governments must also consider how climate change affects men and women differently, as not only do women have smaller carbon footprints than men, they are also, according to the United Nations, more vulnerable to climate change — a fact that Carlsson-Kanyama says “should be reflected in the fight against climate disasters.”

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US Women’s National Team hammered by Sweden in opening Tokyo 2020 match

It was reported that Sweden laid down an early marker in the women’s Olympic football competition, hammering the US Women’s National Team 3-0 on Wednesday.

Stina Blackstenius’ brace and Lina Hurtig’s thumping header gave Sweden a deserved victory, with the US looking a shadow of the side that won the World Cup two years ago.

Sweden was unquestionably the better team from the first whistle to the last and the USWNT, which came into this Olympics as a strong favorite, has much to improve on in the coming games against New Zealand and Australia should it want to win a fifth gold medal.

This historic result for Sweden will give the team confidence it can go one better than Rio 2016, where it fell to Germany at the final hurdle in the gold medal match.

For the US, the defeat ends a 44-game unbeaten run — 40 wins and four draws — that had stretched all the way back to January 2019 when it lost 3-1 to France in a friendly.

Scintillating Swedes

Sweden got the better of the US the last time these two teams met on the Olympic stage, coming out on top after a penalty shootout in the quarterfinals five years ago in Brazil.

Becky Sauerbrunn told the Guardian that defeat was “one of the worst results that the senior national team has had in a major tournament,” saying it provided extra motivation going into the victorious 2019 World Cup campaign and this Olympics.

However, there wasn’t much sign of that motivation during the opening exchanges of the match in Tokyo’s Ajinomoto Stadium — before which both teams took a knee in the empty arena — as Sweden exerted its dominance from the opening whistle.

The Swedes soon got the goal their early play deserved as Sofia Jakobsson’s whipped cross was glanced home brilliantly by Blackstenius at the near post after 25 minutes.

The US had barely managed to get out of its own half in this opening 45 minutes, much less get any sort of foothold in the game, with Sweden enjoying more than 60% of possession.

Blackstenius had a wonderful opportunity to double Sweden’s lead just before the break, controlling a long pass brilliantly on her chest but just getting the ball stuck under her feet to allow US keeper Alyssa Naeher to come out and smother the chance.

Given the extent of the talent in the US squad, however, it was always going to be unlikely Sweden could contain its opponents for the entire half. It was Rose Lavelle who had the chance to equalize, but her header from a long ball into the box crashed against the outside of the post.

That it was the reigning world champion’s only real chance of note in the first half was a testament to Sweden’s superiority, the yellow shirts swarming the US players in midfield and not allowing them a moment to relax on the ball.

The only negative from Sweden’s perspective was that it had only managed to open up a one-goal lead — would the team rue that profligacy in front of goal?

USWNT coach Vlatko Andonovski made two substitutions at the start of the second half, with the vastly experienced Carli Lloyd and Julie Ertz coming on to replace Alex Morgan and Samantha Mewis.

Ertz seemed to immediately breath new life into the US team, but just when it looked like the momentum of the game was shifting, Sweden doubled its advantage.

Blackstenius this time picked up the scraps at the far post after a Swedish corner caused mayhem in the US box and poked the ball past Naeher into the roof of the net. From there, it only got worse for the US team.

After substitute Megan Rapinoe hit the post when she perhaps she should have scored, Sweden put an exclamation mark next to its performance as Hurtig rose high in the box to head home from Hanna Glas’ cross.