10 facts you didn't know about climate change
Global warming, climate change. These are both things we have heard a lot about, but it’s hard to keep track of all of the different findings being thrown around. Some say global warming is fiction, others say the world will dry up and die in the next 20 years. It is up to you what you believe when it comes to climate change, but I will share 10 eye opening facts you may have not heard about that can help to paint the bigger picture.
1. Animal Agriculture = harmful emissions
Animal agriculture is responsible for 51% of greenhouse gas emissions We think that vehicles are responsible for a huge amount of emissions, but animal agriculture is responsible for more than all transportation exhaust combined. Dairy and meat production uses more energy, land and water than we realize. It is the #2 leading cause of all greenhouse gas emissions.
2. Where does all of this CO2 come from?
Livestock account for at least 32,000 million tons of carbon dioxide per year. Carbonic acid has caused the PH of sea water to drop from 8.2 to 8 causing it to be more acidic than the past 800,000 years. Ocean acidification affects marine life like plankton, oysters and coral to name a few.
3. #1 contributor to extinction
Animal agriculture and all of the effects it has on space and the climate is the 1 contributor to extinction and biodiversity loss. The first documented case of a mammal being driven to extinction by climate change was the Bramble Cay melomys, which were ratlike rodents found on a low-lying island in Australia’s Torres Strait. At this rate, more are surely to follow. According to the National Geographic, out of 976 species surveyed in a 2016 study, 47% had vanished from areas they had previously occupied. Animals are forced to find new homes and their migration patterns are shifting. For now, most species are adapting, but the question is for how long?
4. Drought? Animal Agriculture is not helping
17% of all global fresh water consumption is used for livestock. That coupled with the drought we are experiencing due to extreme weather and drinking water being contaminated by sea water means that we are in danger of running out of fresh water unless something is done soon.
5. Too many animals, not enough space
On top of beef generating 20 times more greenhouse gas emissions as beans, beef also takes up 20 times more land than beans, per gram of protein. Animal farming uses 83% of agricultural land but provides just 18% of our calories.
6. How much land do vegans need?
About 20 vegans can be fed on the amount of land it takes to feed 1 meat eater. On average, about 2 football fields per year can feed 14 people on a plant-based diet vs. only 1 person eating meat and dairy.
7. Are we REALLY running out of food?
If the world changed to eating more plant-based foods, the world’s population would be supplied with 30% more food.
8. Want to save land?
What do you think will happen if everyone went predominantly plant-based? When it comes to land, nearly 5 billion football fields of land could be restored to forest.
9. Saving the ozone layer
If the world cut out all dairy and meat products, greenhouse gas emissions could be cut down by 2/3 by 2050. Eating only plant-based meals for a year can save the equivalent of greenhouse gasses generated from driving across the coast from New York to San Francisco 4 times. That is about 11,700 miles worth of emissions saved just by changing the food you eat.
10. Got chick’n?
If every American cut out 1 serving of chicken per week, the environmental effects would be equivalent to taking 500,000 cars off of the road. Expanding beyond just chicken, if the world ate 15% less meat it would be like taking 240 million cars off the road each year.