VEGGIE & VEGAN
Going veggie for the environment
The meat industry is having a devastating effect on our environment, both here in the UK, and globally.
More than 70 per cent of all agricultural land in Britain is used to feed animals. Rearing animals for food is a terrible waste of resources. The same amount of land can feed up to ten times as many people if you grow crops on it rather than graze animals or grow animal feed. This is all the more shocking when you consider that world hunger continues unabated and millions of people each year die of starvation. Yet in some countries, crops are grown to feed animals while people in the same country suffer and die from hunger and disease due to lack of food.
Animal farming is also a huge waste of water. It takes 1,000 litres of water to produce one kilogram of wheat, yet it takes 100,000 litres of water to produce one kilogram of beef.
Intensive animal farming causes soil erosion and land degradation; methane gas from farmed animals contributes to global warming, and waste from intensive factory farms is one of the main causes of water pollution.
In Central America, the rainforest is being razed to the ground, primarily to make way for cattle ranching and growing crops to feed farmed animals.
Fishing trawlers, with nets the size of football pitches, rake the seabed, destroying entire ecosystems and killing off whole species. Even world governments admit that our oceans are on the brink of environmental collapse, with commercial fishing fleets stripping them bare.
Some argue that fish farming is a sustainable alternative, but one in four wild-caught fish is used to make fishmeal to feed to fish on farms. Furthermore, pollution caused by fish farming produces a barren landscape on the surrounding seabed, as nothing can survive.