In an age of increasing environmental concern, what can we do in order to preserve the earth? Animal agriculture; the real story.
Animal agriculture is slowly but surely coming to the fore in discussions about climate change and in my opinion, is the most dangerous industry in the world. Between 18% to as high as 50% of greenhouse gases can be held accountable to animal agriculture compared to the 13% created by the transportation industry, confirmed by the Food and Agriculture organisation of the United Nations. Global Warming is the main reason for rising sea levels and rising temperatures through the world. Naturally as the temperature rises, there is more heat on earth and rain cannot combat the heat effectively; thus in already hot areas drought is introduced which leads to famine. Human suffering could be greatly reduced if those of us who are privileged decrease or stop our intake of animals and animal products. Greenhouse gases such as Methane and Carbon Dioxide are rooted in the animal agriculture industry. Methane is produced in the emissions of cows who are overfed in order to fatten them up for slaughter and when trees are cut down they release great amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere. Furthermore when great areas of forest are burnt down the emissions from the fires also contribute to global warming.
As well as global warming and climate change fuelled by animal agriculture, destroying the planet, there is another human factor to consider. Health is naturally essential to human life and the animal agriculture industry greatly harms human health. Firstly we must understand rainforest deforestation. The leading cause of rainforest destruction is animal agriculture and this is backed up by the Food and Agriculture UN committee as well as the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies: Global Forest Atlas. With this amount of biodiversity being destroyed everyday, great numbers of plant and animal species are disappearing before they have even been discovered. Who knows how many medicines and scientific discoveries are being left uncovered due to human greediness and ego. This wider impact could be destroying the world’s health. More obviously, we have the fact that battery farming means that great numbers of animals are packed into tiny spaces which increases the spread of disease greatly and on a related note 80% of antibiotics produced are given to farmed animals.
Finally, further to saving the environment and our health in one respect, there is the issue of world hunger. UNICEF themselves have said that 82% of starving children live in countries where food is fed to animals, and we are potentially growing enough food to feed 10 billion people. Instead, this grain which is being fed to animals who are being reared for slaughter, supplies meat to mainly the wealthy. This is honestly a whistlestop tour of the harmful effects of the animal agriculture industry but below I have linked a source to find out more about the effects on the environment. I would love to start a friendly discussion in the comments about your thoughts on the animal agriculture industry and why or why not you support it. Finally I would love to make more blog posts about being vegetarian, why I became one and much more on this topic so follow this blog if you would like to see more content on that. Next week I am planning a blog about the refugee crisis in Myanmar.
To learn more about the environment go to http://www.cowspiracy.com/facts/.