Since 1995, 1100 activists have been killed for speaking out about animal agriculture. Among them, Dorothy Stang a woman who dedicated her life to protect Brazil’s rain forest and it’s inhabitants. In 2005, Dorothy was murdered while walking to her home by a hired gun of the cattle industry.
In a report released by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, it states that cattle rearing generates more global warming green house gases than the entire transportation sector.
“Livestock are one of the most significant contributors to today’s most serious environmental problems,” senior UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) official Henning Steinfeld said. “Urgent action is required to remedy the situation.”.
Raising animals for food consumption uses 30% of the world’s water, 45% of the world’s land, and is responsible for 91% of the destruction of the rain forest. Among these shocking figures, animal agriculture is also the leading cause of the oceans dead zones, the leading cause of habitat destruction and the leading cause of species extinction.
Hydrolic Fraction for Natural Gas (fracking) has long been thought to be the leading cause of water usage and contamination as it consumes 100 billion gallons of water per year. Yet, when compared to animal agriculture, there is no comparison. Weighing in at 34 trillion gallons per year in the United States alone.
This means that 2500 gallons of water are required to produce only 1 lb of beef. To put that into perspective, that would be as much water usage as showering for 2 months.
Animal agriculture produces 65% of the worlds nitrous oxide (a gas with the global warming potential 296 x greater than carbon dioxide) and it is estimated that by 2050, this industry will see a 80% increase, as the demand for meat and dairy continues to rise. At this rate of growth, it is estimated that the rain forest will be completely depleted in 10 years.
” Without using any gas or oil or fuel from this day forward we still exceed our maximum carbon equivalent green house gas emissions of 565 gigatons by 2030″ – Environmental Researcher Dr. Richard Oppenlander
According to two environmental specialists in a 2009 World Watch report, animal agriculture is responsible for 51% of all greenhouse gas emissions, while the transportation sector equates to a mere 13%.
This begs the question, why is no one talking about this?
Our environmental organizations are failing us and they are failing the ecosystem. These groups who are supposed to the saving the world are just standing by. This should be the main focus and yet when you visit their websites, there is nothing to be found on agriculture. Why? because these organizations are like corporations, and profit is a bottom line.
1500 years ago, animals roamed free, accounting for 99% of the biodiversity and humans were the 1%. Today, there are only 2% of animals roaming free on the land and humans account for 98% of the biodiversity.
It’s time to wake up and realize that raising and killing animals for food, is precisely what is killing the planet. Meatless Monday’s aren’t enough, its time for a global shift. We are in the middle of the largest mass extinction of species in the last 65 million years. We have to change, we have to evolve.
by LJ Vanier