It’s no secret that climate change is upon us and as a human race, we need to act fast to stop the change from happening as quickly as it is. Being vegan can help with carbon emissions, lessen the amount of deforestation and also help with the water shortage around the world.
It’s widely known that around 80% of deforestation is due to cattle ranching and 91% is down to animal agriculture in general. This isn’t necessarily for the land for animals to graze, it’s mainly for the production of soy beans for them to feed off.
Of the 80% of soybean meal then harvested, only 3% of this is used within human food products.
If we ate soya rather than meat, the clearance of natural vegetation required to supply us with the same amount of protein would decline by 94%.
In terms of space used for animal agriculture, there’s many reasons this is affecting the environment. First of all, the space used for meat production is considerably more than what’s needed to produce soy.
Chicken: 3 times as much land
Pig: 9 times as much land
Beef: 34 times as much land
Alongside the above, the use of this land is causing wildlife’s habitats to be destroyed. In turn, this contributes to the extinction and endangerment of many different species.
Due to the amount of animals being reared for either meat or dairy production, a hell of a lot of gases are being produced and released into our environment. Here’s a few facts;
- Animal agriculture is the cause of 18% of the world’s greenhouse gases.
- Raising animals causes a 65% increase in nitrous oxide emissions. The impact of these towards global warming are 295 times more than carbon dioxide.
- The amount of cows on earth produce 150 billion gallons of methane each day. This is one of the greenhouse gases causing environmental change.
- The UN admits that animal agriculture is one of the top contributors to environmental change. Read more here: Tackling the world’s most urgent problem.
If we carry on as we are, emissions will increase 80% by 2050.
This isn’t something I think many people consider when it comes to animal farming or agriculture but it’s a really important one. Just as a reference, it takes 7,500 litres of water to produce one steak. It takes only 25 litres of water to produce a slice of bread and just 650 litres of water to produce 500g of wheat.
If you eat meat yourself, you’re responsible for 15,000 litres of water being used a day (that’s just you). When you realise that a fifth of the world has a water shortage, this really makes you think about the environmental impact and how we could help others.
I’ve said it before in this series and I’ll say it again, I’m not here to force you into veganism. I simply want you to realise the little or big things you can do to help. This will not only save the animals but also our planet.
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Love, always – B
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