Meat consumption has major environmental impacts. Among them are:
- Deforestation caused by cattle raising and increased production of soybeans for food.
- Water scarcity is increasing due to its often unnecessary use for livestock production and slaughter.
- Soil contamination has also become more severe, because pesticides and other substances are implanted in them to be ingested by livestock.
- Among many others.
Find out more about these environmental impacts by reading this article.
Losses of meat consumption to the environment
In addition to the increase in gas emissions, the increase in meat consumption accelerates the process of reducing forests, which in turn are responsible for carbon retention.
There are studies that indicate that western countries must reduce meat consumption by 90% to control global warming.
Moreover, when consuming meat, it should be in mind that this action will generate cultural, moral, social consequences, in addition to impacts such as the environmental cost, which is not added to the price of meat. This cost also does not include health, infrastructure and sanitation treatments to supply the damage that is caused to agriculture.
In this way, the meat industry expands by taking with it deforestation, contamination and waste of water and energy, in addition to polluting the air and depleting the soils.
It also reads: Why has vegetarianism become popular?
Water scarcity and meat consumption
According to studies conducted by the journal Plos One, water scarcity already affects more than 2.7 billion people each month each year.
In addition to the water consumed every day by the agricultural industry, there is still the problem of contamination being an imminent risk.
Meat consumption and the emission of polluting gases
Meat production is responsible for the emission of polluting gases and greatly increases the effects of global warming. Moreover, if we do not reflect on the limits of production, the preservation of our forests will suffer the consequences, as is already happening with environmental pacts.
According to studies conducted by Greenpeace, meat production emits the same volume of Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) as cars, trucks and ships around the world.
Read also: The 10 benefits of vegetarian food
What is the importance of reducing meat consumption for sustainability?
Food is strictly linked to sustainability, and there is data to prove this. According to a study by the National Institute of Statistics, in 2020, each person consumes on average 20.8 kilos of beef annually in Portugal. According to the same research, the consumption of pork and dairy products reaches 41.4 kilos per year.
How can veganism and vegetarianism help?
Vegetarianism excludes any type of meat from the diet, be it cow, pork, chicken, or others. But vegetarians consume animal products such as eggs, milk and their derivatives.
Vegans, on the other hand, do not consume any animal products, either in food or even in clothing. Both groups can help to reduce meat consumption.
So how to decrease meat consumption?
We know that reducing meat consumption, rather than ending it at all, is a viable option that fits into the routine of most people. However, we need to know how to replace it in a healthy and correct way, to avoid the lack of nutrients.
Examples of grains with a high protein content, which can replace the consumption of red meat, as well as that of birds are:
- the beans.
When they are consumed with rice, corn or quinoa, for example, they replace animal protein.
Combined with this, vegetables, vegetables and vegetables in general are very important for a balanced meal. Kale and spinach, for example, are iron-rich foods, which is very important when thinking about replacing meat.
4 positive environmental impacts on the environment from the decrease in meat consumption
Now that we have described the negative environmental impacts of consuming meat for the environment, let us now go to the positives of avoiding its consumption.
In just one day without meat, you:
- You save 24 m² of land.
- You stop emitting 11 kg of CO².
- You save 8 kg of grain.
- Save 60 liters of water from freshwater reservoirs.
If in one day we get all these benefits, imagine in a month, or even in a year?
Try to change! Try Cheeky Leeks!
We are 100% veggie! We have a variety of veggie burgers made with fresh and organic ingredients to be delivered to your doorstep. Visit our website now and access our menu to know our delights. Join the Clan!