Want to Save the Planet? Ditch Red Meat for Some Dal Chawal

The livestock industry is responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than the world’s biggest oil companies.

2 min read
Hindi Female

Red meat isn’t always the best decision when it comes to dietary habits and we all know that. But if only that was it. Turns out, every time you reach out for a serving of meat in your meals, you’re harming the planet. Going at the current rate, by 2050, food and diet based pressure on the environment would increase by 90 percent, according to the study which was published last week in the journal Nature.

There has to be a significant shift to plant-based diets, away from meat and poultry, says the study. However, the study is limited in its approach to Western meat-heavy diets only and does not offer much on its Eastern counterparts.


CNN quotes study author Marco Springmann, of the Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Food at the University of Oxford in its report, when he says:

It could lead to dangerous levels of climate change with higher occurrences of extreme weather events, affect the regulatory function of forest ecosystems and biodiversity ... and pollute water bodies such that it would lead to more oxygen-depleted dead zones in oceans

He further concludes that the raising of animals for meat is one of the biggest contributors of food-related greenhouse gas emissions which are emitted from the food industry.

The livestock industry is in fact responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than the world’s biggest oil companies.

Additionally, if PETA (People for Ethical Treatment of Animals) is to be believed, the meat industry wastes about 2,400 gallons of water to produce just one pound of meat in the US. This further means that you save more water by not eating a pound than you would have by not showering for six months.

While data like this is still very West-centric and we lack similar details about India, we can safely conclude that the meat industry indeed is taking a toll on the environment.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)


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Topics:  Diet   Vegetarian   Meat Industry 

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