JAPAN Livestock and Fish Slaughter: 7.5 billion tons of fish are killed and consumed annually in Japan, a country with the largest amount of fish consumption per person in the world. Thousands of dolphins and whales are also killed each year, many of whom are slaughtered along the Pacific coast.
Related Disaster: On March 11, 2011, the Tōhoku 9.0 earthquake struck, one of the five most powerful since records began in 1900, causing a tsunami that reached as high as 40.5 meters and travelled as far as 10 km inland after striking the Pacific coast.
- COST: 15,505 deaths, 5,386 injured, 7,305 missing, 300,000 displaced in the Tōhoku region; financial cost forecast at more than US$150 billion (one of most expensive disasters in modern history).
- Note: Many villages that suffered the largest human losses had previously been engaged primarily in fishing and whaling, including Minamisanriku, Kesennuma and Ishinomaki.
ALABAMA, USA Livestock slaughter: Alabama is the US’s third largest poultry producer, with 1 billion chickens slaughtered annually. Alabama’s cattle industry generates US$2 billion in income per year.
Related Disaster: On April 27, 2011, the US South was hit by the deadliest tornado event since 1925, with 173 tornadoes in 14 states reaching up to 322 kilometers per hour.
- Note: At 236 perished, livestock-concentrated Alabama had the most deaths.
TEXAS, USA Livestock and Fish Slaughter: Texas is the nation's largest producer of livestock, with the industry garnering US$8.8 billion in 2009 alone. The state is also the largest producer of sheep and cattle for slaughter, with 20% of the US cattle market.
Related Disaster: Nearly 13,000 wildfires began in November 2010 and continued to burn through July 2011, consuming over 3 million acres, with fires burning from border to border by April. Firefighters from over 43 states assisted in efforts to bring the blazes under control.
- COST: 2 firefighters were killed, with financial cost estimates as high as US$500 million.
- Note: The fires were exacerbated by a widespread and prolonged drought, allowing them to spread into normally wet and humid areas, while also continuing to rage through the beginning of the hurricane season in summer 2011.
QUEENSLAND, AUSTRALIA Livestock Slaughter: Queensland, Australia is the nation’s largest producer of beef and the world’s largest exporter of live cattle. Ipswich, Queensland is the site of the nation's largest meat processing facilities, in which 3,200 cattle are killed each day.
Related Disaster: December 2010 – January 2011: Heavy rains led to a series of floods described by one official as being a disaster of "biblical proportions."
- COST: 44 people dead or missing, over 200,000 people were displaced; financial costs of US$32 billion.
CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND Livestock Slaughter: The Christchurch area's largest industry is animal agriculture. It also contains the nation’s largest slaughterhouse, where 8.5 million young lambs are massacred annually. In addition, the highest volume of dairy products in the country are processed there, with US$164 million in annual sales.
Related Disasters: September 4, 2010: 7.1-magnitude quake in Canterbury
- COST: More than 100 people injured, with significant damage to homes and other buildings. February 22, 2011: 6.3-magnitude earthquake in Christchurch (aftershock)
- COST: At least 46 people injured, with further damage to structures weakened in the original quake. Aftershocks still continue today.
BIOBIO REGION, CHILE Fish Slaughter: Chile is the world’s second largest producer of salmon; Chileans consume 6.5 metric tons of fish annually, with 50% of the nation's slaughtered seafood is unloaded in Biobío ports.
Related Disaster: February 27, 2010: 8.8 magnitude quake devastated the Biobío region, becoming the 6th largest earthquake ever recorded.
POLAND Livestock Slaughter: 1.39 million cows and 20.7 million pigs were slaughtered in 2009; Poland is the largest live exporter of horses for meat in Europe, with 30,000 who are killed annually, and has one of the largest factory pig farm industries in Europe.
Related Disaster: May 2010: worst flooding in160 years
- COST: Damages: 450,000 hectares of farmland were damaged; 23,000 people were displaced; financial cost of €2.5 billion
- Note: 4,300 farms were affected, all of which were involved in livestock operations.
SICHUAN PROVINCE, CHINA Livestock Slaughter: Sichuan is China's largest pork producer, killing 74.7 million pigs in 2006 alone. In addition, more livestock are slaughtered there than in any other province in the nation.
Related Disaster: May 2008: 7.9-magnitude earthquake
- COST: 87,000 deaths; 375,000 injuries; 4.8 million displaced; financial cost of US$112 billion
SOUTH AFRICA Livestock Slaughter: As part of the nation's agricultural industry, some 13.8 million cattle and 28.8 million sheep are killed annually. In Limpopo, the hunting of wild animals accounts for 70% of the province’s yearly tourism revenue.
Related Disaster: December 2010 – January 2011: flooding in 8 of South Africa’s 9 provinces left 4,000 square kilometers of land submerged
- COST: 136 deaths; 13,000 houses destroyed; 8,400 people forced to evacuate as the government declared 33 disaster zones; financial cost of US$2.3 billion in damages
BRAZIL Livestock Slaughter: Brazil is the largest global exporter of beef and the 3rd largest beef consumer in the world. There are at least 40 million cows and 35 million pigs slaughtered annually in the country.
Related Disaster: January 11-12, 2011: heavy rainfall in Rio de Janeiro and surrounding areas, causing mudslides and flooding
- COST: 902 people killed; over 20,000 people homeless; financial cost of US$ 1.2 billion
YUSHU, QINGHAI, CHINA Livestock Slaughter: In Qinghai province, China, Yushu County produces over one-quarter of all the meat, including yak, Tibetan sheep, Yushu horses and goats. The processing of yak and Tibetan sheep meat and dairy products comprise the main industries of the region.
Related Disaster: April 14, 2010: 7.1 magnitude earthquake in Yushu County, China
- COST: 2,700 people died, with 270 who were missing and more than 12,000 injured. Over 85% of homes in the epicenter region collapsed, leaving 100,000 people homeless. Nearly all schools in the county were destroyed or deemed unsafe to enter, with 95% of schools in neighboring Chengduo County also damaged.
PAKISTAN Livestock Slaughter and Abuse: Pakistan is the world’s 5th largest milk consumer, with 33 billion liters consumed annually, and the 9th largest beef consumer in the world
Related Disasters: July - August 2010: severe flooding put over 20% of the country under water, lasting several weeks
- COST: The worst disaster in Pakistan's history; 1,700 people died; 17.2 million displaced; financial cost of US$43 billion August - September 20 2011: extreme floods returned in the south, where many had just barely begun to recover since the previous year’s flooding
- COST: At least 361 people killed; over 600,000 displaced as 1.5 million homes were destroyed and 2.7 million hectares of crops that were lost
- Note: 36% of livestock were lost or killed
THAILAND Livestock Slaughter: Thailand is the world’s fourth largest exporter of frozen chicken, with about 3 million chickens killed per day. Thailand is also the world’s biggest producer and exporter of shrimp, supplying 20% of the global shrimp market.
Related Disasters: March – November 2011: widespread floods that affected at least 58 of Thailand's 76 provinces
- COST: Over 600 deaths in the worst flooding seen in half a century; more than one-fifth of the nation's population and 6 million hectares of land affected; among the world’s costliest disasters.
CENTRAL AMERICA Livestock Slaughter: In Tabasco, southern Mexico, cattle raising is a major part of the economy, with 2 million livestock animals. Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and El Salvador have large cattle populations of well over 16 million combined.
Related Disasters: October 2011: floods struck across El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, southern Mexico, Costa Rica, Honduras, and Guatemala.
- COST: Worst floods in decades; over 100 deaths; tens of thousands homeless; 1.2 million affected
DO WE REALLY GAIN ECONOMICALLY WITH THEANIMAL INDUSTRY? OR ARE WE LOSING ALL THE TIME?