The Impact of Meat on the Environment

This blog will be delivered in two parts as the information gathered is lengthy in its detailing.
I apologise to my American friends if this information appears to point fingers only at the Americans, it does not. This is purely a wake-up call for the world and every human being to start living more consciously.
We as individuals can do many things toward preventing or reducing the impact of global warming and here is just one interesting facet for us to ponder about.
It is proposed that if the world switched to a dramatically reduced meat consumption diet it could radically increase valuable sources of food output and help reduce the huge impact that meat production has on the environment.
The meat industry is linked to deforestation, desertification, water pollution, water shortage, air pollution, and soil erosion.
If you are a meat eater, you are contributing to the destruction of the environment, whether you know it or not.  It is said that the best thing we as individuals can do for the earth is to not support animal agriculture.
Millions of people are consuming countless hamburgers, steaks, and roasts, oblivious to the impact their dietary habits are having on the biosphere and the very survivability of life on earth. Every pound of grain fed flesh is secured at the expense of a burned forest, an eroded rangeland, a barren field, a dried up river or stream, and the release of millions of tons of carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, and methane into the skies.
Forest Destruction: Half of the annual destruction of tropical rain forests is caused by clearing land for beef production. Statistics reveal that for each pound of hamburger made from Central American or South American beef cost about 55 square feet of rain forest vegetation.
In the United States about 260 million acres of forest have been cleared for a meat centred diet. Each person who can drastically reduce their meat intake can safe up to an acre of trees per year.
Agricultural inefficiency: About half the world’s grain is consumed by animals that are later slaughtered for meat; this is a very inefficient process. It takes 16 pounds of grain and soybeans to produce one pound of feedlot beef. If people were to subsist on grains and other non meat foods this would put far less strain on the earth’s agricultural lands. About 20 non beef eaters can be fed on the land it takes to feed 1 meet eater.
Eighty percent of the corn and ninety five percent of the oats raised in the United States is fed to livestock. Altogether fifty six percent of all agricultural land in the United States is used for beef production. If all the soybeans and grains fed yearly to U.S. livestock were set aside fro human consumption, it would feed 1.3 billion people.
Soil Erosion & Desertification: Overgrazing and intensive production of feed grain for cattle and other meat animals result in high levels of soil erosion. One pound of beef from cattle raised on feedlots represents a loss of 35 pounds of topsoil. Over the past few centuries, the United States has lost about two-thirds of its topsoil. In other countries such as Australia and the nations of Africa on the southern edge of the Sahara, cattle grazing and feed crop production on marginal lands contribute substantially toward desertification.
Next blog: the impact of our meat eating conduct on Air pollution, Water Pollution, Water Depletion, The Bottom Line, Other Reasons

2 thoughts on “The Impact of Meat on the Environment

  1. LAIRD

    Why apologise to america – if they were more responsible with regard the environment the world would nt be in the hole it is. They are responsible for 25% of the entire global pollution. Could it be that they are such a large country with a large hinterland that losing New York, Boston and most of that seaboard there is still room for the survivors? 
     As a counter argument I do not see the advantage of digging up jungles to grow soya beans in! Who needs a Mcdonalds a day? Fat idle folk who can nt be bothered to shop for local produce and then ……horror of horrors actually cook a healthy family meal. Acres of Kenyan farmland which used to grow maize for the home population now grows vegetables for Tesco’s and Walmart ! This is globalisation, commercial dictatorship based on a monopoly of the earths resources, generated from the usa. So like I ask apologise?

  2. Suki x

    I am defiantly in favor of respecting the earth and not using up resources needlessly!   I understand we have Global warming it is all too obvious, but is it all generated from what we do here? Are there not elements "out there" that affect this planet such as sun spots or actions in space which effect us?  This earth has been here for millions of years with many changes in the weather a natural evolution, how long has man been monitoring the ‘hole’ on the atmosphere certainly no more than 100 years?   How long has it been there millions probably and changing in size all the time.   look after our beloved earth treat it with respect do not over consume do not waste the precious resources nature gives us.
    On a lighter note think of all the CO2 gasses that the cows produce!!
    Suki x


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