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Choose meat-free to feed the world
Posted 30 August 2012
As news of a looming global food crisis hits the headlines, leading water scientists have announced that people all over the world might be forced to adopt a vegetarian lifestyle in order to cope with future water shortages.
With an extra two billion people expected to be alive in 2050, supplies of fresh water will come under increasing pressure. As animal-based foods require around 5-10 times as much water to produce as plant-based ones, the best way to reduce demand for water is to move to a global vegetarian diet. Malik Falkenmark from the highly-respected Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) wrote in a new report:
‘There will not be enough water available on current croplands to produce food for the expected 9 billion population in 2050 if we follow current trends and changes towards diets common in western nations.’
This comes as no surprise to Animal Aid which has been warning of the environmental damage caused by animal farming for many years. It requires vast quantities of water, including drinking water for the animals, to grow the amounts of crops required to feed them, and during the slaughter process. Animal farming also causes water pollution due to leaks from slurry tanks and other farm run-off. It is also responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than all the motorised vehicles in the world put together and has led to massive deforestation.
In a world with an increasing human population and diminishing resources, it makes much greater sense to feed crops directly to people, rather than to animals who are then killed for meat. And, as well as solving these environmental issues, a global move to a more plant-based diet would help to address the growing problem of modern farming practices that result in untold animal suffering.