Meat a threat to our planet. Tonight 9pm BBC 1 - Healthy Eating

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Meat a threat to our planet. Tonight 9pm BBC 1

Agoodenough
Agoodenough
22 Replies

Hi everyone,

This is an interesting subject and food for thought for anyone who is vegan, a meat eater or interested in our impact on the planet.

bbc.co.uk/programmes/p07v3r94

Ali 🙂🌱

22 Replies
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Jerry
JerryAdministrator

Hi Ali, I think the real problem is the human race is so successful that we are causing the problems, like global warming from industry, us and our never ending urbanisation of the planet.

So now we have to find more efficient ways to feed ourselves and I’m looking forward to watching it so thanks for the reminder. 😊

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Agoodenough
Agoodenough
in reply to Jerry

Yes that’s very true Jerry and you’re welcome 🙂🌱

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TheAwfulToad
TheAwfulToad
in reply to Jerry

I agree. Meat per se is not the problem. Industrial agriculture is the problem. There is absolutely no point avoiding unsustainable meat if we're just switching to unsustainable veg instead. As Cooper27 said, one big problem with the whole system is the inappropriate use of fossil fuels (and the overall inefficiency that accompanies that misuse).

Unfortunately a lot of these debates are led by armchair philosophers who know next-to-nothing about farming, nutrition, ecology, physics, or anything else remotely relevant to the subject. They think that book-learning is a viable substitute for getting your hands dirty, and end up drawing completely erroneous conclusions.

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StillConcerned

A diet that necessitates supplements cannot be healthy, and cannot be what we are designed to eat.

The amount of greenhouse gas from food production is becoming a problem because of the amount of food being produced because of the amount of people to feed.

Instead of compromising our diet, we need to stop burying our head in the sand with regard to population control.

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Cooper27
Cooper27Moderator
in reply to StillConcerned

It really worries me that they keep talking about population growing to 10bn by 2050 - if we all cut our carbon footprint by 1/3, it won't make a difference when the global population simultaneously grows by 1/3. We can't be the only ones to realise this?

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Matt2584
Matt2584Star
in reply to Cooper27

I’m not really good at explaining things but most of the death in the world is due to depopulation.

Look into geoengineering and chemtrails and apparently governments have flat out admitted that they are purposely polluting the skies with toxic chemicals and dimming the sun so we have trouble growing plants and what-knot.

Sounds mental but that’s what they say.

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Cooper27
Cooper27Moderator

I would love to watch this, but don't have a TV licence unfortunately. I will see if any clips come out at some point :)

It's a very divisive subject at the moment, I was listening to something a few weeks ago saying that the majority of its carbon footprint comes from the fossil fuels used to transport it.

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Matt2584
Matt2584Star
in reply to Cooper27

And according to vegan documentary, Cowspiracy. The burning of fossil fuels is a big reason for CO2 but not as big as animal agriculture.

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Cooper27
Cooper27Moderator
in reply to Matt2584

I watched that, but apparently it's a distorted figure. This was the first article to come up when I Googled it:

newint.org/blog/2016/02/10/...

This article says the impact is less than fossil fuels, only accounting for 15% of emissions, but I've heard from various sources that someone who adopts a vegan lifestyle would typically cut their carbon footprint by just 2-4%.

Unfortunately it's become a bit of a distraction: industry promotes it, because they get us to point our anger at the meat industry, so that they don't personally have to do anything. The truth is that we all need to do our bit, which will include dietary changes (incl. buying local produce), as well as putting pressure on manufacturing to change their ways.

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Matt2584
Matt2584Star
in reply to Cooper27

The article you posted says agriculture causes less CO2 emissions than fossil fuel and I think that information isn’t really correct.

Harvesting fruits and veg , transporting them to supermarkets to sell seems like using much less CO2 when you have the likes of factory farms using lots of machinery to make millions and millions of processed meats and dairy products daily and not forgetting all the trees being torn down to make breeding ground for cattle and so on, that also creates CO2 emissions.

And it’s not only the CO2 but it’s also the water consumption. It takes masses of water just to make one beefburger!

With less water in the world, forest fires can spread more easily.

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Cooper27
Cooper27Moderator
in reply to Matt2584

The article explained how the figure was derived from flawed sums, and the author of the article was vegan too, so doesn't have a vested interest in making meat seem less impactful than it is.

You might be interested to read into the impact avocado & almond farming is having on water supplies in their local climates, it was a big eye opener for me, and I now buy less of them.

I've worked on some carbon reduction schemes for the construction industry, and it's pretty surprising the amount of CO2 that comes from the products we buy: heavy machinery to produce/extract natural resources, shipping them to various countries, processing them into products with the use of various chemicals, then shipping them around the world to where they'll be used. Maybe that's why I find it easier to think meat doesn't account for as much as 51% of carbon emissions...

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PhilFreeToAsk

You can only have forest fires if the forests are still there!!!

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Matt2584
Matt2584Star
in reply to PhilFreeToAsk

I know that.

When I say “Trees being torn down to provide breeding ground”, I’m not saying that all trees in the world are torn down.

Humanity would not exist if that happened.

But I’m saying that with all the water being used for agriculture and also company,

Nestlé stealing natural water and then bottling it up and selling it to the public, this is not helping the forest fires seen over the world and therefore they spread so much more easily.

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PhilFreeToAsk

I take the point you are making about water.

My point is that our forests are disappearing at an alarming rate. Species are in decline or lost. Vast amounts of trees are being lost in the rainforests of South America and South East Asia. The Boreal forest is intensively logged in Siberia. The UK has about 2% natural ancient woodland left etc etc.

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Matt2584
Matt2584Star
in reply to PhilFreeToAsk

Yes.

And the less forests/trees we have in the world, the harder it is going to get for people to breathe.

They say the Amazon rainforest is the earth’s lungs, well if companies keep tearing down these trees to make more breeding ground for cattle and the like, then there will be nothing left.

So is it that these companies are doing this to make money or is it because they are deliberately trying to wipe out humanity?

Sounds to me like the latter.

When you look into the

NWO (New World Order) or the Georgia Guidestones and depopulating the planet, it all seems to come clear.

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Cooper27
Cooper27Moderator
in reply to PhilFreeToAsk

I have mixed feelings about this: the president isn't too interested in protecting the Amazon rainforests, and I think his stance is completely wrong. At the same time though, we need to take responsibility for ourselves. We're effectively saying to Brazil that they need to hold onto their rainforest to make up for our over-consumption. In reality, we need to take care of our own house, whilst persuading Brazil that destroying the rainforest isn't in their interest.

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PhilFreeToAsk

This happening worldwide, not just the Amazon. Think about palm oil production in Indonesia causing vast devastation of rainforests.

Yes, we need to take responsibility for ourselves. Am I hypocritical? Possible. Awareness first then change can follow.

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Oolong

This is a really interesting link to the programme giving different perpectives. bbc.co.uk/food/articles/mea...

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Cooper27
Cooper27Moderator
in reply to Oolong

That's a very interesting article, thanks for sharing. This bit stood out for me:

“I think people have got the message that eating less red meat is better health-wise, but what many may not know is that switching from, say, beef to chicken is causing havoc for the world’s forests. That’s because vast amounts of animal feed used to fatten poultry in the UK are imported from South America, where agricultural expansion means the destruction of natural ecosystems"

I wasn't aware that chicken feed travels so far, it doesn't seem necessary. I'll have a closer look into that. I feel like most of the debate at the moment focuses around red meat, but we eat a lot of chicken in the UK and this needs to be mentioned too.

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Oolong
Oolong
in reply to Cooper27

Very good point and yes, I picked up on that too. I buy organic meat when we do eat it and presume that makes it better but does the feed for that travel across the world too? I shall be making inquiries and would be interested to compare notes with you Cooper27.

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andyswarbs

Whether meat is a threat can depend on the timescale you are looking at. Many reports average methane (primarily from beef & dairy cows) emissions over 100 years, which is very favourable to methane which is only active for 10 years, but during that 10 years is incredibly destructive. Now whenever I have seen a climate change report the timescales shorten. Greta Thunberg goes on about how we ONLY HAVE 10 years! So if you accept her position then averaging methane over 100 years I consider very dubious.

Cow farming is of two main types. By far the majority are kept in feedlots. These are thus very efficient on animal farmland. They are however largely fed soy & corn crops, in fact they are by far the biggest used of such crops. The pro-vegan argument is that we stop producing these ruminants then we can also vastly reduce the need for monocrops and pesticide use. Such land can then be rewilded or used for growing other crops directly for human consumption.

At the other end is grass-fed & pasture-raised. This tends to be higher quality and thus is not easily available to people on a low-budget. The main planetary-health argument is that they take up a lot of land. If we changed all the cows we have now into grass-fed then we would need several planet earths for them to live! Do we want a food solution that is just for the wealthy?

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crazyfitness
crazyfitnessTidyClub

I have now watched this with my hubby Agoodenough and I found it hard to watch but it does seem to have some impact on my hubby. I'm not there with meat with him yet but you never know.

Honestly the cruelty in America is shocking, although I know there are plenty of meat eaters in Britain the animals are much better looked after.

I really hope the programme makes people think twice about eating meat.

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