As people are becoming increasingly aware of what they eat and how it correlates with the health of their bodies and immune system, they are also beginning to see the correlation between food and the health of the planet. In other words, our inner and outer environments are connected.
Meat production (beef, poultry and other animal protein) is one of the LARGEST contributers to environmental pollution in the world. Raising animals for food contributes to an unbelievable amount of pollution in the Earths water, topsoil, fossil fuels and other natural resources. It is also responsible for mass destruction of rain forests, species extinction, climate change and more. Meat production has quadrupled in the past 50 years and livestock now outnumber people 3 to 1… basically, the population of livestock is growing at a faster rate than the human population! (FAO, FAOSTAT Agricultural Data 2002 www.fao.org).
Did you know that:
1) It takes 12,000 gallons of water to produce one pound of beef, according to vegetarian author John Robbins, and 25 gallons to produce a pound of wheat?
2) It takes 40 calories of fossil fuel to produce one calorie of protein from beef? That’s 8 times as much fossil fuel energy as the production of plant protein. The US could feed 800 million people with the grain that livestock eat.
3) We lose close to 7 billion tons of topsoil every year for the production of meat? ….and, according to the Nature Conservancy, every second of every day one football field of rainforest is being destroyed, and much of this is to raise meat for fastfood.
Aside from the mass consumption of natural resources, meat production is a major pollutant to our water and air from incredible amounts of concentrated animal waste (2.7 trillion pounds a year)… Yuck! Where do you think it all goes?
On that note… I thank all of you for participating in World Vegan Month…. thanks for reducing your meat intake, choosing certain days to experiment with the incredible flavors that vegetarian and vegan cuisine have to offer, and for trying things like the 28 day vegan challenge, 30 days raw, and other fun opportunities to stop contributing to the inner and outer environmental impacts of meat eating.
Cheers to a healthy and thriving body, mind, spirit and planet!! GYS: Bring life back to life, one choice a time…