The Ag Forum is a chat room for discussion of current issues in Australian and international agriculture policy. Join the conversation today!

Forget coal - sheep and cattle are the real climate enemies!

- Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Forget coal fired power stations and fossil fuels, the real culprits causing human-induced climate change are farmed livestock, according to a steadily growing number of reports and commentaries. So-called 'climate change authorities' as diverse as Nicholas Stern and the US-based Worldwatch Institute are increasingly pointing the finger of blame at livestock, and suggesting vegetarianism is the quickest way to save the world. 

In a widely-reported interview, Stern states that “Meat is a wasteful use of water and creates a lot of greenhouse gases. It puts enormous pressure on the world’s resources. A vegetarian diet is better.”

He predicted that people’s attitudes would evolve until meat eating became unacceptable. “I think it’s important that people think about what they are doing and that includes what they are eating,” he said. “I am 61 now and attitudes towards drinking and driving have changed radically since I was a student. People change their notion of what is responsible. They will increasingly ask about the carbon content of their food.”

Meanwhile, the Worldwatch Institute has released a paper which argues that if emissions associated with livestock were fully accounted for, they would make up more than 50% of global emissions, and that the quickest way to save the planet would be to convert to soy-based meat and dairy substitutes.

Interesting that these and other similar reports seem to make no reference to some very major holes in the greenhouse emissions accounting methodologies used to reach these conclusions.  
Comments
Christophe Pelletier commented on 29-Oct-2009 08:59 AM
I knew I could not trust vegetarians, euh... I mean herbivores.
You can see right away that sheep are trouble. Who wears a fur coat in Australia?
Well maybe we all should stop exhaling, that would make a difference in CO2 emissions.

We welcome comments

To leave a comment existing users need to login, new users need to register.

Login


Register





Share |

Register for AFI news via email