OK, so I started following Leonardo DiCaprio's Facebook Page a couple months ago and it's not just that I like his movies - even though I did love Catch Me If You Can and at least a half-dozen others. Believe it or not, most of his posts are about environmental topics and that is how I discovered a documentary called Cowspiracy, which in my view, does away with the myth of sustainable fishing and animal farming. There is literally no way to sustainably farm enough meat, chicken, fish or dairy for the 7 billion people on this planet - at least not with our current (deplorable) dietary habits.
You can download the movie for $4.95 at Cowspiracy.com, or watch it free on Netflix. If you're wondering, the movie advocates complete veganism and let's be honest, it's a tough sell. Graham Hill's Weekday Vegetarian proposal may have better chances of success, so from Cowspiracy, here are a few good reasons to go (mostly) vegan or vegetarian:
- "Animal agriculture is responsible for 18% of greenhouse gas emissions, more than the combined exhaust from all transportation." And get this, those emissions come from the methane in cow farts. It would be funny if it weren't so serious. And I never thought I'd say cow farts on this blog...
- We're also doing away with the rain forests at an alarming rate, as land is cleared to make room for all those cows. Of course there are free range farms but those "animal friendly farms" require even more land, and as Cowspiracy shows us, we'd have to quite literally clear all of the land in the US to make room for the farms needed to "sustainably" feed America.
- If you've been taking short showers for the past 20 years, know this: a huge amount of water is used up by animal farms. On average, 2,500 gallons of water are needed to produce one pound of beef. This includes the water the cows drink and water used growing their food supply. To put this in perspective, showering uses up approximately 2 gallons per minute.
- All of the above is true for the dairy farming, which puts a damper on my vegetarian plans. I quite like oat, coconut and almond milk so I don't mind abandoning milk though I would miss cheese. We could probably due with having dairy less often anyway, especially if its full of hormones ...
- Cowspiracy also addresses the myth of Sustainable Fishing and how we need to give the oceans a break, but I'll let you watch the film and find out for yourself. Suffice it to say that "the world's stock of seafood will have collapsed by 2050" if we don't change our habits now (via the Telegraph)
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