Meat Production and Environmental Health
This post provides resources on the relationship between meat production and global environmental health. In 2006, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimated that the meat industry is responsible for 18% of global greenhouse gas emissions. In 2009, two World Bank scientists reevaluated that figure and raised it to a minimum of 51%. In addition to releasing greenhouse gases, the meat industry contributes to air and water pollution, soil erosion, and deforestation, and large amounts of water, fertilizers, and pesticides are used to grow animal feed.
- Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Press Release: Livestock a major threat to environment(November 2006)
- Worldwatch Institute: Livestock and Climate Change (article published in Nov/Dec 2009 issue of World Watch magazine)
- Audubon Society: Low-Carbon Diet (article published in Jan/Feb 2009 issue of Audubon magazine)
- Food Climate Research Network: "The Food Climate Research Network is a UK research council-funded initiative. Its aim is to better understand how the food system contributes to greenhouse gas emissions, and to research and promote ways of reducing them."
- BBC News Online: Hungry World 'Must Eat Less Meat' (August 2004)
- Cornell University Science News: U.S. could feed 800 million people with grain that livestock eat(August 1997)
- American Journal of Clinical Nutrition: Sustainability of meat-based and plant-based diets and the environment (Pimentel and Pimental. Vol. 78, No. 3, 660S-663S, September 2003); Diet and the environment: does what you eat matter? (Marlow, Hayes, et al. Vol. 89, No. 5, 1699S-1703S, May 2009)
- International Journal of Epidemiology: Commentary: Why diets need to change to avert harm from global warming (Bowles. 2009 38(4):1141-1142) - Abstract only
- Environmental Health Perspectives: How Sustainable Agriculture Can Address the Environmental and Human Health Harms of Industrial Agriculture (Horrigan, Lawrence, et al. Volume 110, Number 5, May 2002)