At the Table of Change
The first bit of good news is that we're becoming aware of and beginning to grasp the enormity of the negative environmental impact of our meat-based diet on the Earth. The second bit of good news is that there are many alternatives now coming online and into supermarkets and restaurants that satisfy our meat-loving taste buds and are more planet friendly.
Awareness starts here.
Researchers at the University of Oxford conclude that: “A vegan diet is probably the single biggest way to reduce your impact on planet Earth, not just greenhouse gases, but global acidification, eutrophication, land use and water use. It is far bigger than cutting down on your flights or buying an electric car, as these only cut greenhouse gas emissions.
"Agriculture is a sector that spans all the multitude of environmental problems. Really it is animal products that are responsible for so much of this. Avoiding consumption of animal products delivers far better environmental benefits than trying to purchase sustainable meat and dairy." (See Article #3 below.)
In their book Cowed: The Hidden Impact of 93 Million Cows on America’s Health, Economy, Politics, Culture, and Environment, the authors conclude that: “If we can pare American beef consumption down, and limit it to the healthiest, most sustainable beef, we can reduce pollution, global warming, medical costs, animal cruelty, loss of soil, loss of biodiversity, and germs resistant to antibiotics, while increasing the amount of land and water available for other uses." Read the book review by John Berger (Article #5 below)
Change starts here:
Clifford and I have been experimenting with different alternatives to meat and dairy products. So far we've been impressed. The plant-based burgers from Beyond Meat are tasty and "meaty." The sausages are likewise perky and satisfying—like sausages should be. We've found a totally fine substitute for butter, which I never would have thought possible because I LOVE butter.
We're also looking for non-dairy products so we can let cow products alone as much as possible. Our aim is to move lower down the food chain and have found goat and sheep cheese and yogurt to be a good alternative. These are not easy dietary changes to make so be patient. These kinds of changes take courage. We need to always remember that we're doing this for love of Earth, for love of ourselves and all Life.
ARTICLES WELL-WORTH DIGESTING
Food and Climate Change, An Interactive Guide: This is a fascinating website that puts it all together in a people-friendly presentation. If you look at only one of these links, let it be this one.
"How to Eat as if the Planet Mattered": You'll find terrific resources and tips for everyone's eco-friendly kitchen and grocery list.
"Cutting Out Meat and Dairy is Probably the Best Thing You Can Do for the Planet": Research from the University of Oxford makes a strong case for a vegan diet.
Impossible Foods: Why "Impossible"? Read the interview with the founder of Impossible Foods, Dr.Pat Brown.
A Cow's Life Isn't All Clover": A book review of Cowed: The Hidden Impact of 93 Million Cows on America’s Health, Economy, Politics, Culture, and Environment.
Beyond Meat: Here's the website for some great plant-based burgers and sausages.
Costco's New Best Seller: Supermarkets are getting with the program to bring more non-meat products to their shelves.
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