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Meat’s Impact on our Planet

Tuesday, April 07, 2015

pig in water by Bob

Lately we’ve heard a lot of talk on water.  California is facing a serious shortage.  We read a great Op-Ed in the New York Times addressing this issue.

“A 2012 study in the journal Ecosystems by Mesfin M. Mekonnen and Arjen Y. Hoekstra, both at the University of Twente in the Netherlands, tells an important story. Beef turns out to have an overall water footprint of roughly four million gallons per ton produced.”

That’s a lot of water!!!! And, this isn’t just any water, it is what is called “blue water”.  This is water that comes from lakes, rivers, and aquifers.  Californians and much of the west coast depend on this “blue water”.  This same Op-Ed compares the water consumption of plant agriculture.

“Vegetables use about 11,300 gallons per ton of blue water; starchy roots, about 4,200 gallons per ton; and fruit, about 38,800 gallons per ton. By comparison, pork consumes 121,000 gallons of blue water per ton of meat produced; beef, about 145,000 gallons per ton; and butter, some 122,800 gallons per ton. There’s a reason other than the drought that Folsom Lake has dropped as precipitously as it has.”

It is clear that Beef wins out here.  You will find i this article that alfalfa is the culprit for depleting California’s water.  Sure, you think you can no longer blame the meat industry.  Think again.  Alfalfa is predominantly going to grass fed beef and being export to Asia.

How can we work toward a healthier environment?  You’ve guessed it.  Stop supporting animal agriculture.  Not only are farmed animals suffering horribly, we don’t have an endless supply of water on this planet.  Check out the Vegan Outreach article discussing global warming.

What will you do today to help the animals and our environment?  GO VEGAN!

Have you seen the movie Cowspiracy?  They give us some great facts about the environmental impact of meat consumption.

 

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