Vegetarian Facts : Climate Change and Meat Consumption
It has been almost 12 years since i decided to become a vegetarian. There are many reason why i choose to become a vegetarian. There are a lot difficulty i have been going through in these past 10 years. There were very few people who become vegetarian in my city. So it’s kinda difficult to find something to eat when i was going out with friends. Some of my family and friends often mocked me because i didn’t want to eat meat. But after more than 10 years has passed, people’s view about vegetarian is not same as before.
Vegetarian become more popular around the world. Many people are already aware of the goodness of vegetarian. In recent years, there are many organizations in the world began to suggest people to decrease the consumption of meat.
In addition to health reason, being vegetarian can help the earth to avoid from destruction. Recent years, the weather around the world has changed a lot. This is because the world is increasingly damaged and chaotic due to human activity. In my country, Indonesia, we know there are two seasons in a year, which are dry season and rainy season. 10 years ago, it was rarely rains in the dry season. And generally, the dry season always takes place between April and September and wet season takes place between October and March. But now, the conditions are much different. Rain in the dry season is frequently happen now. And sometimes, its kinda difficult to distinguish when the dry season and wet season begins.
A recent official report published by Worldwatch, that written by Goodland and Anhang conclude that more than 51% of greenhouse gas emissions come from livestock. A report (Livestock’s Long Shadow) in 2006 by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) that is widely quoted estimates that 18 percent of annual greenhouse gas emissions around the world caused by livestock, but recent analysis by the authors Goodland and Anhang in the latest issue of Worldwatch magazine found that livestock and their byproducts in fact produce at least 32.6 billion tons of carbon dioxide per year, or 51 percent of annual greenhouse gas emissions around the world.
The main source of greenhouse gas emissions from livestock are:
- Deforestation of rain forests to grow crops to feed livestock.
- Methane from sewage. Methane is 72 times more potent cause global warming than CO2
- Cooling and transport of meat around the world
- Raising, processing and slaughter of animals
Meat production also uses a lots of water and other resources that would be better to be used to feed hungry people around the world and provide water for those who need.
Based on their research, Goodland and Anhang conclude that replacing livestock products with soy products and other alternative would be the best strategy to reverse climate change. They said: “This approach will have a more rapid effect in reducing gas emission gas in atmosphere than replacing fossil fuels with renewable energy”
Mitigation efforts based on scenario of changes in diet
- Changes in eating patterns will reduce 31-47% of the total target of greenhouse gas emissions reduction
- Emissions reductions is required in Energy Sector
- Healthy Eating pattern is a more realistic scenario
The Climate Benefits of Diet Changes
- More Available Land, because of the abandoned farm and pasture
- Reduction in Agricultural Land which encourage the availability of more land for natural plants or plants for energy
Note : From “Climate benefits of changing diet” issued by Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency that written by Stehfest Eike, Lex Bouwman, P.van Detlef Vuuren, Michel G. J. den Elzen, Bas Eickhout, Pavel Kabat.
The fact is given about how dangerous the effect if we keep to consume animal meat. We still have a chance to make the most effective steps to save ourselves and the planet. By choosing plant-based diet we can reduce a very large number of greenhouse gas emission.
We’re betting our lives and our future generations lives. It is crazy to know that we are very aware of the possibility of these consequences, but still failed to act.
Please make a lifestyle that is truly environmentally friendly. Choose healthy and full of love lifestyle by reduce your meat consumption drastically or choose to become vegan. This is the single most powerful action to prevent climate change. because meat production is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions.