MORE VEGETARIAN, MORE ECOLOGICAL!
Trash segregation, water conservation, minimising the exhaust emissions – those are the steps we mention most often when we talk about ways of protecting the environment. But shouldn’t we start with our diet? As stated by the Central Statistical Office, there’s an upward tendency of meat consumption in Poland. In 2018, meat consumption per 1 person in a single household was equal to 62.4 kg. It’s a lot, especially when we compare this data to the global average of 33.7 kg in 2020. Not many people realise how negatively meat production affects the environment.
Let’s start with the issue of DEFORESTING. Production of fodder and preparation of terrain for breeding require a massive use of land. In most cases, it’s handled by cutting down forests, which clean the air by absorbing dangerous carbon dioxide emissions, and are a natural environment for many plant and animal species.
Another important aspect in this matter is the WATER USAGE. Meat production (including all of its stages) requires much more water than plant cultivation. Below, you’ll find exemplary estimations of water usage for specific kinds of meat:
|Production of 1 kg of meat:||Water usage in litres:|
Source: The Guardian, https://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2013/jan/10/how-much-water-food-production-waste
The last, but certainly not least, factor which harms the environment is the METHANE EMISSION. Methane is a greenhouse gas that has even more of a negative effect than the well-known carbon dioxide. It contributes to trapping heat in the atmosphere and is produced by breeding cattle, as a side effect of digestion, as well as during a breakdown process of cow feces. The previously mentioned deforestation also affects how much of that gas reaches the atmosphere.
Willfully giving up animal produce might prove to be a true salvation for our planet then. As of right now, we’ve already got numerous ecological crises and meat production only contributes to deepening them. If every one of us consumed it only 3 times a week, the difference would be tremendous. Not only that, it would benefit our health because excessive meat consumption increases the risk of having a stroke, a heart attack, bad cholesterol, etc. Many scientists, when asked about the harmfulness of the components used in the production of vegetables (here mostly pesticides) and animal produce (here any kind of antibiotics), indicates that the former is a much safer product than the latter.
Get inspired by green recipes!
Below, you’ll find a few links to fascinating blogs with recipes for veggie goods:
Author: Gosia/translated by Konrad
image source: www.crello.com
The article was created as part of project called Teenage Action for the Environment. The project is conducted thanks to the grant from Active Citizens Fund National, financed by EEA.