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We have a huge risk of crisis as early as 2040 which necessitates altering the entire world’s economy. Greenhouse gas emissions continues at current rate which means the aerospace will warm 2.7 degree Fahrenheit by 2040. This is increasing all the droughts and poverty level as well as bombarding the coastlines. This is a very significant issue, especially after considering we currently only have one hospitable planet. There are countless changes we can foresee to ameliorate our greenhouse gas emission.
Animal agriculture is the number one contributor to greenhouse gas emission. Eat less meat and more plant based meals, you don’t need to commit to vegetarianism or veganism. If the entire country did not eat meat one day of the week, it would be as equivalent as not driving 91 million miles. The meat industry’s cruel malpractices will come to cost our planet. “Farming” animals create almost one fifth of the man made greenhouse gas emissions that escalated the changes in the regions worldwide.
Raising livestock produces more greenhouse gases than the emissions of the transportation sector. Animals produce a significant amount of methane from their digestive tracts which is 86 times more destructive than carbon dioxide from vehicles. Methane is a process called enteric fermentation, a normal part of the digestion system of ruminant animals. 120 kilograms of methane is emitted every year just from cattles. Livestock is the root of environmental degradation and resource consumption that is destroying our planet today.
Producing the meat also requires an immense amounts of water. It requires around 1,800 to 2,500 gallons of water for a single pound of meat. Tofu and other kinds of soy based meals only require 220 gallons of water per pound. Live Science states, “The most significant greenhouse gases are water vapor (H2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O), according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)” (7). H2O has such a large impact on our environment, abandoning it will only destroy our planet.
Living in a state afflicted by drought and water shortage, the utilization of water is a major concern for plenty of us. The average Californian uses about 1,500 gallons of water per individual, each day, and 50% of it is associated to the consumption of meat and dairy products. Meat and dairy products are highly water-intensive, especially since the livestock diet requires very water-intensive grains. All the water implanted in the grains that the animals are consuming is related with the national water footprint, the overall amount of water that is needed to produce a variation of goods. For example, one quarter hamburger necessitates over 660 gallons of water to produce, which is equivalent to showing two entire months.
Livestock operations on land has created over 500 nitrogen-flooded dead zones in our oceans around the world. It is incorporating over 95,000 square miles of areas that are fully destitute of life. Our oceans are in near collapse, three quarters of the world’s fisheries are over utilized, fully utilized or completely depleted due to overfishing. The oceans are under barricaded which is problematic for the marine environments. If we as people don’t take action, scientists predict we will result with fishless oceans as early as 2048.
Massive amounts of corn are being used to feed livestock. The corn is grown on forested lands that have been cut down decreasing the level of oxygen and destroying the ecosystem. Another issue is substitution of resources by the government to reduce the prices of meat. This causes them to subsidize the corn and water to make meat affordable which increases the demands for it. The demands for grass fed “free range” meat is higher now, which takes up much more land and water for the grassland.
The only other ecosystem that is being expeditiously demolished is the world’s rainforest. Our global rainforests are considered as the lungs of our planet. They take in CO2 and release oxygen for the environment. An acre of our rainforest is cleared every second, the leading cause is to grow feed crops for the animals and to graze them. We are losing almost 100 animals, insects and plants on the daily due to the rainforest destructions.
The growth of cattles on the deforested lands consequence in 12 times more greenhouse gasses. They also use up to 50 times more land than rich grassland. The production of dairy, predominantly milk, has a huge impact on our environment. Roy states, “According to the U.S. Dairy report, 95% of the water required to produce milk is used to grow cow feed. On average across the United States, 35% of the feed is produced by dairy farmers, while 65% comes from other farmers” (3). Cows milk is a struggle to sustain considering one gallon of cow’s milk requires 1000 water to produce.
In conclusion, the only way to ethically live on this planet with the population of 7 billion other people is to eat food for others rather than eating others. Leaning more towards a plant based lifestyle is one of the only sustainable ways to save the economy. Ecologically you will create a healthier lifestyle. You will feel more intact and connected with your surrounding atmosphere. As animal agriculture continues, so will the effects of our greenhouse gas emissions. At the end of the day, we have one planet earth, there is no planet B.

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