Why You Should Become a Vegetarian

I wasn’t going to do another post about vegetarianism for a while, but I think I got bit by the vegan bug again, and so I’ve been on some over the top animal-fetish (people who love animals[people who care about animals{not people who have sex with animals}]} websites. Their stuff is pretty hardcore, this people really do enjoy animals (platonicly), but some of the stuff sticks. Like when you get hit with a pie in the face, not all of the whipped cream sticks, but if some of it did, then your brother still got you pretty good. Little does he know, I love whipped cream.

But that’s the point! Whipped cream! I can’t say that there are too many animals on the planet, and then still eat their byproducts. My reasoning goes that I won’t eat meat because we raise and slaughter so many animals that it has become a massive burden on the environment, and I want to reduce my carbon-footprint by not eating meat. Simple. But, I figured, since they’re already alive and everything, I might as well not let the eggs from the chickens go to waste. Or the milk from the cows. Or (insert animals byproduct).

The animals don’t die to make those things, and if they’re already making them and I’m not eating them, then they’re being wasted. My logic is flawed. My boycott of meat works the same way as my boycott of animal products must work. If I don’t eat them, less will be bought. If less are bought, less will be made. If less are made, less animals. If less animals, less pollution. Get it? I have nothing to hide behind except the fact that cooking without butter is like swimming with water. Stupid.

Anyway, now that I let the vegan bug bite you too, I might as well share some convincing statistics that I didn’t make up. DIDN’T.

  • The production of one calorie of animal protein requires more than ten times the fossil fuel input as a calorie of plant protein. (The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition)
  • Producing a single hamburger uses enough fuel to drive 20 miles and causes the loss of five times its weight in topsoil. (The Food Revolution” by John Robbins)
  • Nearly half of all the water used in the United States goes to raising animals for food (The Food Revolution” by John Robbins). It takes more than 2,400 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of meat and only 25 gallons to produce one pound of wheat (Water Inputs in California Food Production” by Marcia Kreith)
  • To produce a day’s food for one meat-eater takes over 4,000 gallons; for a lacto-ovo vegetarian, only 1200 gallons; for a vegan, only 300 gallons (The Vegetarian Times Complete Cookbook)
  • Animals raised for food produce approximately 130 times as much excrement as the entire human population and animal farms pollute our waterways more than all other industrial sources combined.
  • Raising animals for food (including land used for grazing and land used to grow feed crops) now uses a staggering 30% of the Earth’s land mass. (Livestock’s Long Shadow: Environmental Issues and Options, a 2006 report published by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization)
  • Of all the agricultural land in the U.S., 80% is used to raise animals for food and grow grain to feed them—that’s almost half the total land mass of the lower 48 states (Major Uses of Land in the United States” by Marlow Vesterby and Kenneth S. Krupa)
  • Animal agriculture is responsible for 18% of the total release of greenhouse gases world-wide (this is more than all the cars, trucks, planes, and ships in the world combined)  (Livestock’s Long Shadow: Environmental Issues and Options, a 2006 report published by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization)
  • By replacing your “regular car” with a Toyota Prius the average person can prevent the emission of about 1 tonne of CO2 into the atmosphere, By replacing an omnivorous diet with a vegan diet the average person can prevent the emission of about 1.5 tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere. That’s 50% more CO2 saved! (It’s better to green your diet than your car”, The New Scientist, December 17, 2005.)
  • In the U.S., 70% of the grain grown is fed to animals on feedlots (Plants, Genes, and Agriculture” by  Jones and Bartlet)It takes up to 16 pounds of grain to produce just 1 pound of meat. (The Global Benefits of Eating Less Meat by Mark Gold and Jonathon Porritt). Fish on fish farms must be fed 5 pounds of wild-caught fish to produce one pound of farmed fish flesh (The Food Revolution” by John Robbins)
  • The massive amounts of excrement produced by livestock farms emit toxic gases such as hydrogen sulfide and ammonia into the air. Roughly 80% of ammonia emissions in the U.S. come from animal waste (The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency).The world’s cattle alone consume a quantity of food equal to the caloric needs of 8.7 billion people—more than the entire human population on Earth (The Global Benefits of Eating Less Meat” by Mark Gold and Jonathon Porritt)
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Why You Should Become a Vegetarian

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