This is a great question. As cool as it would be if everyone decided to go vegan, it wouldn’t happen overnight. As more people decide to switch to a humane and compassionate lifestyle, the demand for animal products starts to decline. When this happens, farmers start breeding less animals for consumption.
What effect does this have on the environment?
- Less carbon dioxide emission (if one person exchanges eating meat for a vegan diet, they’ll reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 1.5 tons per year)
- less methane production (chickens, turkeys, pigs, and cows are collectively the largest producer of methane in the U.S.)
- less nitrus oxide (the meat, egg, and dairy industries produce 65% of worldwide nitrous oxide emissions)
- not to mention that 1 calorie from animal protein requires 11 times as much fossil fuel as one calorie of plant protein
- and the diets of meat eaters create 7x the greenhouse emissions as the diets of vegans
- nearly half of all water used in the United States goes to raising animals for food. it takes more than 2,400 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of meat (1 pound of wheat requires 25 gallons)
- you’d save more water by not eating one pound of meat than you would by not taking a shower for 6 months
- raising animals for food uses 30% of the earth’s land mass (that’s about the same size as Asia! approx. 17 Million sq. miles. to give you another point of reference, the moon has less area than that, at 14.6 million square miles)
- more than 260 million acres of U.S. forest have been cleared to create cropland to grow grain to feed farmed animals
Why is raising animals for food so inefficient?
- 70% of grain and cereals grown in U.S. are fed to farmed animals
- it requires 16 pounds of grain to produce 1 pound of meat
What does eating meat have to do with people starving in other countries?
- every ounce of water, grain and resources that goes towards an animal who will ultimately be slaughtered is an ounce of water or grain that could have gone to those who so desperately need it. a study published earlier this year in the journal Environmental Research Letters analyzed the world’s agriculture resource data and found that humans cutting meat from their diets could play a significant role in combating world hunger. According to the researchers, 36 percent of the total calories that come from crops are allocated to farm animal feed, but only 12 percent of those calories actually make it to people’s dinner plates. The researchers concluded that if all of the world’s crops were directly consumed by humans, there would be approximately 70 percent more food available, providing sustenance for an additional 4 billion additional people.
Check out this article, in which the UN is urging a global shift towards a vegan diet -
As the global population surges towards a predicted 9.1 billion people by 2050, western tastes for diets rich in meat and dairy products are unsustainable, says the report from United Nations Environment Programme’s (UNEP) international panel of sustainable resource management.”
So, in short, if the planet begins to move towards a vegan diet, our planet would last much longer, there would be better food opportunities for people who don’t get enough, there would be less damage done to the environment, there would be less disease, and maybe the other sentient beings on this planet will finally be treated with the respect they deserve.
At this point in our world’s history, it is impossible to live a 100% sustainable life. We each leave a carbon footprint simply by being alive (unless you live in the wilderness and grow your own food and sew your own clothes with cotton you grew yourself, and even then who knows), though I do believe one day it will be possible for that to be reversed — for us to actually leave the world in better shape instead.
That said, there are many, many steps we can right now that reduce the impact we have. I encourage everyone to do their own research, but one of the most significant steps we can take is to eliminate our consumption of animal products. This industry is a huge contributor to global warming; there is simply no denying it. A short Google search can pull up a great deal of information.
Days like this are incredibly frustrating for me because of how incredibly ignorant everyone really is about it. People post about “Earth Day cupcakes” made with animal products and harmful food coloring. They don’t even realize what they’re doing. It’s like how food and personal product companies celebrate breast cancer awareness by selling products with ingredients and chemicals that contribute to cancer. The world is run by media propaganda, fake holidays, lying sensationalism, and ignorant participants jumping on the bandwagon without knowing who’s driving, where it came from, or where it’s going.
This isn’t a small issue. This is a huge issue that 99% of the world’s population is contributing to. That is massive. If you’re not vegan, you are contributing to one of the most significant culprits of our one and only home’s demise. This isn’t an emotional or biased statement of opinion. This is fact.
Being vegan isn’t hard; it’s merely an adjustment. I made a pumpkin pie last night in half an hour. It’s delicious. Being vegan isn’t elitist; plant-based foods are far cheaper than meat. Being vegan is, undeniably, one of the foremost prerequisites for building a healthy, sustainable, and peaceful world.
Please consider what this day means. Please consider how terrifying it is that we only have one out of every 365 days dedicated - loosely and misguidedly - to saving our planet. For most people, it consists of nothing more than clicking “share” on a Facebook post. I realize taking action can be intimidating, because most of us don’t know where to start. But you don’t have to go on a tree-planting expedition in the rainforest to make an impact. You can start with your own personal habits, right now, today.
If you think what we do won’t matter in the end or that the world is doomed anyway, consider that even though we can’t be completely sustainable right now, changing our habits as a society could buy us the time we need to develop strategies that will, ultimately, allow for complete sustainability - even a reverse, positive environmental evolution.
As the old saying goes, if you think you’re too small to make a difference, try spending the night in a room with a mosquito.
I never understood that Oaken was gay because there was literally no confirmation by anyone that he is. Hi family can be a broad term. It could be his family, could be a family there, could be friends who are family. I don’t understand <_>
So this anon person and their family actually think gays are bad and corporations are good. Aaaaaand now we know why the world is a giant ugly mess.
How did the clothes you’re wearing get to you? View the interactive
Everyone stopped drinking Crystal Pepsi and now where is it? Oh yeah, it doesn’t exist anymore because the demand for it dropped so greatly it no longer became profitable to continue making it.
Great, now do the same thing for living god damn beings.
Carnism is forgetting basic rules like “demand and supply” when it feels convenient.
Hey, look. Chickens aren’t unintelligent, unfeeling animals. Who would have guessed? »
Version 1 of ‘A Rough Guide to Spotting Bad Science’. Thanks for everyone’s suggestions earlier in the week, attempted to include as many of them as possible!
Download link here: http://wp.me/p4aPLT-ap
Approach the world with an open mind, but not so open that your brains fall out.
Here’s a list of tips on how to weigh good science from bad. Combine that with my video on “How to Read Science News" and you’ll be in pretty good shape and shall never be led astray:
veganism is basically for rich white people who can afford to eat a plant-based diet and find adequate protein and iron alternatives. asking for everyone to become a vegan is classism and racism at its finest.
Your classism argument doesn’t seem to be based on facts, but rather on misconceptions. Back when I relied on food stamps, my vegan diet was so cheap that I would always have food stamp money left over to help feed my siblings, too.
What does being white have to do with taking easy steps to reduce harm to animals, the environment, and our ability to feed humans? Are there race restrictions on eating a healthier and less cruel diet?
Perfect response to the most ignorant argument of all time.
On Tumblr, you can’t say, “Go vegan! It’s good for animals, the environment, and your health!” That sounds too much like plain English to be accepted by Tumblr SJWs, who may get confused by what you mean.
The proper way to say it is:
"If you aren’t an indigenous person living off the grid;…
X% of the world: VACCINATIONS ARE HORRIBLE AND POISON AND A CONSPIRACY AND I WILL NEVER GIVE ONE TO MY CHILD EVER.
X% of the world: ANTI-VAXXERS ARE HORRIBLE PEOPLE WHO ARE IGNORANT AND EVIL AND THEY’RE ABUSING THEIR CHILDREN AND SHOULD BE TRIED AS CRIMINALS AND HANGED*
Guess what, you’re both fucking retarded morons. Some vaccines, like malaria if you’re traveling abroad, are worth getting because their benefits outweigh the risks. A lot of vaccines, like the flu shot, are not, except under certain extreme conditions. Some are most likely government- and big-pharma-hyped to the point of being unethical, and some may actually be more harmful than good. But this all-or-nothing/black-and-white attitude makes you look just as fucking stupid as the side you’re opposing. You guys aren’t scientists. All you know is what you’ve read, and who knows how accurate that is? Unethical research is done all the time, and plenty of it slips through the cracks. Even though there is conflicting research on both sides, your brain decided to latch on to one side like a fucking lifeline and convince itself that it’s the world’s leading expert on medicine, rather than admitting this isn’t a black-and-white issue and the only thing we know for sure is that there is probably some validity at the source of both arguments.
*gist of actual comment I read this morning
No; America is fat because they choose to buy the hamburger and fries instead of actually buying vegetables at the grocery store and making their own salad, which is cheaper than the hamburger and fries.
I know this is meant to be funny but, well, it’s not. It’s perpetuating this bullshit excuse that being healthy is “too expensive” or “elitist”. For one, the burger/fries/coke is FAR too many calories for one meal, and may even top the amount of calories one needs in an entire day, so you’re already eating more than you need, which means you’re not as poor as you’d like to think. In the grocery store, meat and cheese are some of the most expensive food there is. Rice, beans, and grains are far cheaper, even if you’re not bringing fruits or vegetables into the picture. There are all kinds of websites and books (like “vegan on $4 a day”) that illustrate this fallacy.
Bottom line, people just want an excuse to keep eating their unhealthy crap. Being healthy — healthier, at least — is not elitist or expensive. Even if it may cost more to fill your fridge with organic fruits and vegetables, why not consider the amount of medical bills you’ll be saving over the course of your lifetime?
For anyone who says they can’t afford to eat healthy food, I say you really can’t afford not to. I grew up in a one-income household, and my father didn’t make much money to begin with, but we always ate healthy food. We also didn’t buy junk food, soda, booze, cigarettes, or any of the other things people spend money on, and most of our clothes came from the thrift store. I saw how our money was spent, and health was the priority. So unless you’re living on the street, you really can’t say that you can’t afford to eat well. You just have to re-prioritize your spending.
My name’s Jon Camp, and I’m Director of Outreach for Vegan Outreach, a nonprofit working to reduce animal suffering through the widespread distributio…
Jon Camp of VO is doing an AMA today with Reddit. Got any questions about veganism, vegetarianism, factory farming, activism, etc.? Check him out!