There are a lot of statistics in this post and most of them can be (and are) disputed by various groups and organizations. Not surprisingly, the beef and dairy lobby have gone at a number of these hard. In most cases, I have tried to backup the usage of a particular stat by researching the source and how they were derived. It started to become cumbersome to annotate all those sources in the post so I am doing it here. Enjoy.
- ^ In addition to the first-hand production methane, nitrous oxide, and carbon dioxide, the 51% of greenhouse gas emissions stat accounts for how exponential growth in livestock production, accompanied by large scale deforestation and forest-burning, have caused a dramatic decline in the earth’s photosynthetic capacity, along with large and accelerating increases in volatilization of soil carbon. [source: Globalisation and Ecological Integrity in Science and International Law, by Westra Laura Soskolne Colin L Bosselmann Klaus]
- ^ The Cowspiracy documentary was perhaps not my first introduction to the idea that animal agriculture has negative effects on the planet, but it put many of those effects together into one (semi)coherent picture. Also note, that while I recommend watching the film (but not the duck scene), that recommendation does not mean that I think it was well made. Andersen especially, provides some fairly cringeworthy commentary.
- ^ In fact, fresh water shortages have already exposed themselves in the U.S. and Europe. This will only get worse with aging infrastructures and additional pollutants.
- ^ “Americans don’t want the animals they eat to suffer unnecessarily — but today, virtually all of them do.” says Jon Bockman, Executive Director of Animal Charity Evaluators. This is happening on factory farms.
What is a Factory Farm?
Beef cattle: 500 head on feed (feedlot)
Dairy: 500 cows
Hogs: 1,000 head
Broiler chickens: 500,000 sold annually
Egg-laying chickens: 100,000
- ^ The power of the beef industry almost cannot be overstated. Whether it is forcing unhealthy food pyramids on our kids, to bringing libel lawsuits agains citizens simply for stating facts, or getting laws passed that make it illegal for you to photograph or video farms in many states, the meat lobby is perhaps one of the most feared foes of environmental and health groups. [source: The Politics of Meat, Where’s the beef? When meat’s in trouble, lobbying expands]
- ^ Some estimates put the deaths at the hands of corporate interests in beef into the thousands, with 185 murders in 2015 alone. [source: Surge in deaths of environmental activists over past decade, report finds]
- ^ Also, if you think how that hamburger comes into being is natural, you’re practicing extreme ignorance. The growth hormones, antibiotics, and feed all produce a very unnatural cow, that then gets shipped and slaughtered in ways that are cruel, to create a single hamburger that can have the DNA of 1000 individual animals in it. Does that sound just like the hamburgers of yesteryear?
- ^ Could this seaweed that tastes like bacon be a real thing?