For the Planet

Think you can be a meat-eating environmentalist? Think again.

Animal agriculture is the primary cause of global warming.

Analysis by environmental researchers at World Watch Institute state that animal agriculture accounts for 51% of annual greenhouse gas emissions (not 18% as stated by the Food and Agriculture Organization).

WWI points out that the Food and Agriculture Organization’s report “Livestock’s Long Shadow: Environmental Issues and Options,” did not take into account: animal respiration, land use, under counted methane, fluorocarbons used for cooling farmed animals, cooking their meat, factory-farmed fish, the production, distribution and disposal of animal agriculture byproducts leather, feathers, skin, fur and their packaging, disposal of liquid waste from animal agriculture, production, distribution and disposal of packaging used in animal products, carbon-intensive medical treatment of millions of cases of zoonotic illnesses and the millions of cases of chronic degenerative human diseases resulting from consuming animal products.

Farm animal production continues to be the single largest human endeavor using up so much of our world’s land, water, air and energy and in the process creating air and water pollution, deforestation and desertification. And it is increasing. As countries become more affluent, their meat consumption increases. Meat consumption has increased 5x in the last 50 years. By 2050, global factory farm animal production will double from the present level, accelerating global warming.

Some Facts

  • most of the grain grown in the world is grown to feed animals, not people
  • animal agriculture accounts for over 8 percent of global human water use and is the largest source of water pollution, contributing to “dead” zones in coastal areas and degradation of coral reefs
  • 70% of previous forested land in the Amazon is now occupied by pastures, and feed crops cover a large part of the remainder of what was once fragile rainforest
  • if less animal products (meat, dairy, eggs and fish) were consumed, there would be fewer animals raised for food and substantially less greenhouse gases produced
  • less animals raised for food = less methane produced and the faster methane will leave our atmosphere
  • less animal agriculture = less carbon dioxide = slowing down of the permafrost melting which could release massive amounts of methane
  • less animal agriculture = less industrial fertilizer = less nitrous oxide = less water and land pollution
  • less animal agriculture = less deforestation

Changing light bulbs is not enough! Consumer demands and our own appetites drive animal agriculture production and it is killing our planet. Make today the day you choose to explore a plant-based diet.