March 16, 2007


The livestock industry -- raising animals for meat, milk, and eggs -- generates 18% of the world's greenhouse gases from human activity. That's more than worldwide transport, and more than the entire E.U.'s total.

Animal farms account for 9% of human-caused CO2 emissions, 37% of methane, and 65% of nitrous oxide. Methane has 23 times and nitrous oxide 296 times the warming effect of CO2.

Whereas human-generated CO2 comes to only 3% of natural emissions, human-generated methane is 150% that from natural sources. And whereas CO2 stays in the atmosphere for more than a hundred years, methane stays only 8-16 years. Therefore, a drastic reduction of methane would have a much quicker effect on the climate.

Curtailing the livestock industry would also reduce the waste of other resources, such as agricultural land (33% of which worldwide is used for animal feed), water (including its pollution), and forests (deforestation for grazing land being another major contributor to global warming).

environment, environmentalism, ecoanarchism, animal rights, vegetarianism