Let´s save the planet
This beautiful planet which we call home has a beautiful balance of life, in perfect sync with nature. Unfortunately, over the years, due to man’s evolving needs this fine balance has been disturbed quite a bit. However, the good news is; we millennials are well aware of this fact and are very much willing to restore this balance with changes in our lifestyle habits.
Becoming vegan is one of those positive changes in lifestyle that many people across the world are adopting, in order to ensure the overall well-being of their mind and body as well as to save the planet, our home.
Reports suggest that the lifestyle habits of people today have a detrimental impact on the environment, and if we are to save our home we need to come together and do our bit to reduce our carbon footprint. As per researchers at Oxford University, eliminating meat and dairy products from the diet can reduce an individual’s carbon footprint from food by as high as 73%. So, let’s take a closer look at how a vegan way of life can have a positive impact on the environment.
Overheating of the planet is apparently the most detrimental impact of human consumption of meat. And, as we all know, global warming has chain reactions which not only upsets the fine balance of nature but also the various natural processes that are crucial to the existence of the human race. The huge amounts of methane that the cattle emit, the gases that are released from the manures that they produce, the oil and natural gas that is consumed to transport the meat to markets around the world, the electricity consumed to refrigerate the meat to prevent spoilage, as well as all the energy sources used to plough as well as water the fields where crops are grown to feed these animals; all contribute to global warming in more ways than one. Adding to these is the emissions as well as loss of green cover from clearing acres of forest land for farms so crops can be grown to feed the livestock. All these factors have been at play for really long now and have done substantial damage to the Earth. So, can you imagine the price we humans actually pay for that chicken burger or that bag made of pure leather that we so proudly flaunt! And, becoming Vegan can actually save the planet from these harmful emissions.
Scarcity of Land and resources
The rapidly multiplying human population is already a menace that needs serious thought and to add to that is the ever shrinking available land area where the human population can be accommodated. And, when this available land area is used up for rearing animals, the problem only aggravates. For instance, if we compare two families, one that is Vegan and one that consumes meat, you will see that the Vegan family can happily survive on just an acre of land, while the non-vegetarian family will need way more space to accommodate not just their family but also the livestock that they would need to maintain for the meat and dairy products.
In fact, the current situation is such that even though the amount of land available for farming is already scarce, almost 30% of the ice-free surface on Earth is either used by livestock or to grow food for these animals. Moreover, when so many people around the world still go to bed hungry, it definitely makes more sense to use the food grain to feed the human population and not use it to feed the chicken factory-bred in large farms to provide various non-veg food items to a certain percentage of people.
Strain on Water Resources
This is simple math, the amount of water that would be required to grow food crops would obviously be less than that required to quench the thirst of livestock, bathe and clean them and grow crops to feed them. For instance, in order to grow a pound of potatoes, a maximum of 229 pounds of water is required while, for one pound of beef, the water spent is about 9,000 litres. Also, do you know, it takes about 1,000 litres of water to produce just one litre of milk?
Going by these figures, can you even imagine the kind of strain that eating meat puts on the water resources of already water-stressed regions on the Earth! So, by going vegan, we get to check the deterioration as well as shrinkage of the precious water bodies too.
Industrialization and transport have always been highlighted as the primary sources of pollution but the other two culprits, industrial-scale agriculture and livestock rearing have often been kept in the dark. But, the truth is, with all the animal excreta drained into the water bodies, the chemicals from the farms leaching into the rivers as well as extensive fishing, the water bodies are becoming polluted and quality of air deteriorating which automatically disrupts the fine balance of nature and the Earth’s biodiversity. Ecoregions and biodiversity hotspots across the globe are dying out, putting serious strain on the environment. But the good news is, we can stop all this and save our planet by adopting the vegan way of life.
The rivers are our lifeline and as such, polluting the water bodies will only plague us with various deadly diseases. Animal excreta have pathogens like E-coli, salmonella, fecal coliform and such others, which can result in serious health conditions for humans. Moreover, the antibiotics and other such formulations that are systematically administered to livestock for quick growth as well as more meat are eventually passed down to the humans consuming them, thus fuelling the growth of different strains of resistant bacteria and making it difficult to cure various diseases. Also, health conditions like obesity, blood abnormalities, thyroid problems, sugar, cancer etc. are in a big way the after effect of consuming meat and dairy products over all these years. So, when we decide to go vegan, we are not just contributing to saving the Earth but also the human race at large!
Apart from all the above mentioned points, there are several other problems like oil-crises, inflation, deteriorating air quality and dying water bodies that have a direct or indirect co-relation with consuming meat and dairy products.
Moreover, using any form of animal product is cruelly depriving a life of its right to live and thrive on the lap of Mother Nature, and do we really want to do that? Considering the global scenario today, it can well be said that becoming Vegan is apparently the “bestest” way to save the planet, ‘Our Planet’!