- The Facts:Animal agriculture is the single most detrimental industry to our environment. We’re talking pollution here. Water, air quality destruction of nature.
- Reflect On:Can we take responsibility for our actions and see how we are contributing to the destruction of our planet? We are able to make a difference by changing our choices.
Meat and dairy industries are on the way to becoming the world’s largest polluters, even topping the fossil fuel industry, according to a new report.
The Institute for Agricultural and Trade Policy and GRAIN came to this conclusion after conducting a thorough analysis of the top 35 meat and dairy producers in the world. Overall, their report found that the companies were often hiding data about their emissions others had set targets that showed how they intended to deal with the amount of pollution they were producing.
The authors warned that if these industries were to continue down their current path, that they could be responsible for 80 percent of the allowable greenhouse gas budget by 2050.
“There’s no other choice. Meat and dairy production in the countries where the top 35 companies dominate must be significantly reduced,” Devlin Kuyek, a researcher from GRAIN told The Independent.
“These corporations are pushing for trade agreements that will increase exports and emissions, and they are undermining real climate solutions like agroecology that benefit farmers, workers, and consumers.”
The top five meat and dairy corporations of the world are already responsible for more emissions than ExxonMobil, Shell, and BP.
The consumption of meat and dairy across the globe is quite concentrated in only several countries and the top livestock companies resemble those countries.
China, the US, the EU, Canada, Brazil, Argentina, Australia and New Zealand combined, are responsible for a whopping 60% of the global contribution to meat and dairy emissions, this is about two times as much as the rest of the world on a per capita basis.
The authors also looked at any efforts that were being taken to limit the amount of emissions and found only six of the 35 companies that were studied had targets including their entire supply chain, even though this portion accounts for up to 90 percent of the total emissions.
“It’s time we realized over-consumption is directly linked to the subsidies we provide the industry to continue deforesting, depleting our natural resources and creating a major public health hazard through antibiotic overuse,” said Shefali Sharma, director of IATP.
“This report shows what a key role they play in creating climate change as well.”
With Awareness, Comes Change
Yes, these companies should be held responsible for their poor practices, this might even be an issue for the UN to take note of and step in to ensure better practices for the future. However, we don’t have to wait for policymakers of the world to stop this from happening, we have the power in our own hands.
By stopping the consumption of these products, or at the very least reducing the amount of meat and animal products we are consuming on a regular basis, we could make a significant dent in the number of emissions and pollution caused by Big Meat and Big Dairy across the globe. We can make a difference in a number of ways.
With so many plant-based alternatives becoming available and widespread knowledge on the benefits of a plant-based diet, it’s easy to see why eliminating animal products from your diet simply makes sense.
It’s simple, if we are not consuming these products than the big corporations will not be producing them, thus drastically lowering the amount of harm we are causing to the planet. This is one way to directly vote with your dollar and put your money where your mouth is. It is so exciting to see this information come to the surface and more and more information becoming available to us that shows us blatantly what we can do to make a profound impact.
We can all do our part.