One trendy diet lifestyle now making the rounds is part diet, part eco-activism and part religion. It involves more than just counting calories and steps. This craze is beyond fruits and nuts or the eco-friendly hunter/gatherer paleo-paradigm of diets past. Its followers exhibit an almost religious devotion to the earth. They make it their mission to safeguard the eco-future by eating nothing that does not pass rigid carbon footprint protocols.
Their diet has no name, but a concern for the climate defines it. Driven by this climate panic, the person becomes the diet and thus is called a climatarian.
What Climatarians Believe
For the climatarian, everything is about sustainable eating and living. It is not enough that all things be organic or healthy. Thus, not all nuts, fruits or meats are equal. Climatarians insist that they be locally sourced to avoid the use of carbon-heavy transportation infrastructure. Not even all local products are equal. Everything must be scrutinised to see whether it adheres to eco-friendly practices. Healthy foods like local almonds are taboo because they use too much water. Farm to plate distances must be kept to a minimum which makes only local avocados acceptable.
The first commandment of climatarianism is never eat anything without considering its emission levels and carbon footprints, no matter what.
The second commandment is a bit more flexible. Buy anything certified by the liberal establishment to be climatarian-friendly, no matter the contradictions.
Marketing to the Climatarians
The contradictions come from market forces looking for ways to brand themselves climatarian-friendly while making a good profit. The trick is to give the impression of strict sustainability, organicity and climate concern that can be ordered instantly with the click of an inorganic mouse.
Indeed, when climatarians first appeared around 2015, it did not take long for Big Business to notice them. Soon, all sorts of climatarian-friendly options appeared on the market. Restaurants like Chipotle and Just Salad have put these products on their menus. Food companies offer these options online and will send them anywhere with free “carbon neutral shipping.” Almost anything can be turned carbon-neutral by buying carbon offsets in some distant Amazon jungle. Offsets cover a multitude of eco-sins.
Thus, the problem with the climatarian option is that it functions inside the globalised high-tech world. The option uses the global trade, energy, electronic and information networks that tend to destroy the earthy local culture climatarians claim to support. The postmodern climatarian world is one of image, simulacra and fluidity undergirded by a modern infrastructure that supplies the power to keep the eco-show going.
The Spiritual Contradictions of the Climatarians
This contradiction of dueling physical infrastructures is mirrored by a clash of spiritual perspectives. The climatarian option is choreographed to project the image of organically produced food sourced in nature-friendly communities respectful toward the land. It imagines low-tech production, full of local colour and creativity. Thus, this option requires a human type with the character and spiritual qualities that allow such production to happen.
However, the climatarians are unwilling to adopt the lifestyles that make this organic imagery possible. The archetypal climatarians are not locally cantered since they have no permanent roots or secured identity. They are hyper-individualists who do not accept moral restrictions, since such rules would forbid the instant gratification that allows them to be and do whatever they want.
Organic society presupposes a moral infrastructure, which most climatarians will not embrace. It assumes deep-rooted communities that distil traditions over generations and thus take care of the land. The production of such local and organic products needs vibrant families with strong traditions to give stability and dynamism to production. Above all, the most authentic organic society is a fruit of Christian civilisation that teaches people to live together in virtue and harmony with nature, including human nature.
This Christian vision provides the conditions for the full development of culture and economy that look upon creation as a gift of God to reflect His greater glory.
Thus, the lifestyle of the Climatarians has nothing of the organic character that produces the foods they crave. It has everything of the frenetic intemperance that gave rise to the industrialised, mass-produced world they claim to hate. Climatarians embrace a tribal primitive existence inside the hip, woke world of all things liberal.
Postmodern climatarians accept and even celebrate these contradictions as part of their chaotic worlds. Their immoral lifestyles destroy society while their eco-activism claims to save the earth. Their habits are unstructured inside hyper-organised infrastructures. They seek out mystical experiences inside a brutal secularism.
Climatarians are born from the perceived imbalance in how society harmonises with nature. They see the frenetic intemperance of a world that leads to chaos and disorder. They observe very real problems that need to be addressed. However, they do not dare to challenge the immoral society responsible for so much of this disorder. Indeed, they change their diets without adopting the moral perspective needed to return to order.
– By John Horvat II