Our environment is a precious commodity. We all want it to be around for future generations to enjoy without fear. Yet, global warming is at our doorstep. Have you ever thought your diet might be the culprit?
There are many reasons a diet containing meat may be bad for the planet, meaning that choosing vegetarianism could help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The EPA lists these as ways eating meat can do damage:
- Air pollution due to dust and liquid manures.
- Fossil fuels, water and land over-use.
- Rainforest erosion and destruction for pasture land. We are cutting down rainforest for cattle to graze.
- Water contamination due to animal waste. Factory farms often pump animals full of antibiotics. Then, their excrement is used to fertilize crops. Unfortunately, that contains drugs and bacteria along with it. A separate EPA report estimates that 80 percent of ammonia emissions in the U.S. come from animal waste.
- Grain and corn are grown for animal feed instead of addressing world hunger. Farm animals also use up a lot of water.
According to chooseveg.com, raising animals for food produces more greenhouse gas emissions than all of the cars, planes, and other forms of transportation combined.
These days it seems like people are trying to eat locally or eat organic products. Why not take it one step further and try going meat-free? If permanent vegetarianism seems too drastic, make one or two meatless meals per week. There are many delicious vegetarian recipes that can be found online. The planet will thank you.