Posts by guest writers do not necessarily reflect the views of NoTricksZone. The following post by Sarah Brown looks at the impacts of livestock farming on our environment. Needless to say, some of the claims made are hotly disputed.
By Sarah Brown, Diamond Trailers
When we think of greenhouse gases, the first picture that appears in our mind is that of pollution due to transportation systems. Did you know that livestock farming is the largest source of methane emission in the world? Livestock farming contributes about 14.5% of global greenhouse gas emissions, which, in contrast to popular belief, is responsible for the emission of far more greenhouse gases than that caused by transportation across the globe.
Some fail to see the scale at which livestock farming is being undertaken worldwide. Did you know more than 6 million animals are butchered for food every hour and about 70 billion farm animals are reared annually? The very next thought that comes to one’s mind is that how it can be such a big problem when domesticating animals has been done by humans across the globe, from thousands of years? You would be surprised to learn that with the advancement in technology humans has completely changed the way in which livestock farming was done historically. Farm animals were reared on small farms buy individual farm owners, and their livelihood depended on the livestock.
The processes of livestock farming have been industrialized now and are done at a very large scale. You would be surprised to learn that farming uses up about 92% of all of our fresh water supply and third of which goes into the production of animal products. For instance, a single cow that is reared for its milk can consume up to 50 gallons of water every day and the number can double up during the summer months. Additionally, water intensive-crops are exclusively grown to feed these animals, which takes more than half the water available in the US.
To put things into perspective, it can be estimated that about 477 gallons of water are required to produce 1 pound of eggs, and to produce one pound of meat 2500 gallons of water along with 13 pounds of grain is needed. The aforementioned figures must have caused ripples in your brain. Be it the issue between Israel, Lebanon, and Jordan for the Jordan river, or between Egypt, Sudan, and Ethiopia for the Nile River, we cannot deny the fact that water is increasingly becoming one of the most scarce resource and the next World War might be fought over water.
Be it for reducing pollution, making water available in areas where it is not readily accessible, or for world peace, water management is a must and reducing the consumption of water by livestock farming can be a great start towards a better water management system. The solution lies in reducing the consumption of dairy and meat products so that its demand is lowered. As demand falls, the scale of livestock farming will be decreased. Try switching to a flexitarian diet, or to a vegan diet, it can really help.
If the aforementioned information struck a chord with you, you might want to check out the below infographic from Diamond Trailers. It shows various other benefits of reducing the scale at which life livestock farming is currently being undertaken and more.
Sarah Brown works freelance on behalf of Diamond Trailers, which presents an infographic showing various benefits of reducing the scale at which livestock farming is currently being undertaken and more.