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Words of Wisdom

The 1st Middle East Vegetarian (MEVEG) Congress, Part 18 of a Multi-part Series, Dec. 6, 2010

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“Industrial farms – we let out of a lot of carbon into the air, so the greenhouse gases go on increasing. During the production process, what happens is even the animals that are there in the farm, the methane that comes out fills 18% of the greenhouse gases today, are because of the animals’ what? You cannot imagine, we rear 56 billion animals for our food today, just to feed six billion people!”

“Why did we get into the cycle? That’s because we started with agriculture, then the livestock revolution started only in 1990, just about 20 to 30 years ago, from about 80. Lots of antibiotics, look at the amount of antibiotics livestock is just eating. The pharmacies, they all produce a lot of antibiotics, it’s used up 50% by the livestock industry. Pesticides – 37% is used by the livestock industry.”

“So, in effect, what is happening is one kilogram (~2 lbs) of beef – the amount of pollution that is there, that we let out in the atmosphere for getting one kilogram (~2 lbs) of beef – is the same as if you are driving for three hours, and leaving lights in your house on back home for those three hours, the amount of pollution that you would spread is the same as eating a kg (~2 lbs) of beef.”

“Grazing land – 26% is used of the soil nutrient and water use. Amazing! And what happens is, the variety of animals, the biodiversity, is completely getting ruined. These are the 23 global hot spots where there were millions of animals, now the species are just getting wiped out.”

“Just to produce one kg (~2 lbs) of beef – 16,000 liters (~4227 gal) of water, that means three years of the animal’s growth, the amount of water it needs, then the processing, then the transportation. It’s phenomenal, it’s completely unsustainable by whatever math that we know.”

“So, one of the solutions and the only solution that is there is: reduce that water footprint by shifting your consumption patterns. You have to reduce the meat intake faster. If you are having seven days, bring it down. Become a flexitarian like the people said in the morning, become a weekday vegetarian, which we will talk about tomorrow. Do something, reduce that for the benefit of the planet and your health.”
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Part  18 / 49
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